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£200m support for Covid-hit innovative businesses

Government hopes Sustainable Innovation Fund will keep R&D projects alive during pandemic

The UK government has unveiled a £200 million support package to help embattled innovative businesses to recover from the impacts of Covid-19.

Announced 27 June, the Sustainable Innovation Fund will provide grants to R&D-intensive companies across the UK in need of urgent financial support to keep projects alive.

“Our country is home to some of the world’s most cutting-edge businesses that turn ingenious ideas into new technologies every day,” said business secretary Alok Sharma. “That is why we are backing our innovators and risk-takers with new investment so they can recover and grow out of the coronavirus pandemic.”

In particular, the government is looking for applications for projects that could help the UK meet its target to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. These could include developing technologies to make homes and offices more energy efficient and reducing the carbon footprint of public transport.

The funding, which will be delivered through the innovation agency Innovate UK, is part of a wider £750m package of grants and loans announced in April.

Businesses are invited to apply from 29 June.