New tax credits for companies carrying out R&D welcomed in UK

April 19, 2002

Brussels, 18 April 2002

'Save British science' has welcomed a £400 million (approximately 650 million euro) package of tax credits for UK companies carrying out research and development (R&D), as announced by the UK's Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown on 17 April.

'Some people may complain that this is a relatively modest measure, but we need to put it in context,' said Dr Peter Cotgreave, Director of Save British science. 'Other taxes are rising, and big companies must demonstrate that they are prepared to take advantage of this credit before it can be expanded. Except in the pharmaceuticals and aerospace industries, UK firms invest less than their competitors in research,' he said.

Dr Cotgreave also called for a rise in university researchers' and science teachers' salaries, saying that 'there is a market for the best brains, and we need to pay the going rate.'

Save British science also welcomed tax reductions for small companies. 'Many of these are the kind of high-technology firms, like those spinning out of university research laboratories, that will be so important in the future economy. Anything that stimulates them is likely to be a good thing,' said Dr Cotgreave.

For further information on Save British science, please consult the following web address:

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