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Doubts over Hammond’s spring statement promise on R&D target

Research bodies have cautiously welcomed the chancellor’s spring statement amid huge uncertainty over Brexit, but also voiced concern over his ability to reach ambitious R&D spending targets.

In his statement on 13 March, Philip Hammond confirmed the allocation of £200 million to research in Cambridge, Edinburgh and Oxfordshire, while reaffirming the government’s commitment for the UK to spend 2.4 per cent of its GDP on R&D by 2027.

The chancellor also confirmed that he will launch a three-year spending review before the summer recess, provided the UK leaves the European Union with a deal.

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