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Digital economy must not be left in Brexit limbo

20 January 2017

The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee Chair, Iain Wright MP, reacts to the Government's response to Committee's Digital Economy report.

BEIS Committee Chair, Iain Wright MP, has reacted by highlighting the Government's delay in producing its long-overdue Digital Strategy and warning that Britain will be "left behind" and have its advantage in the digital economy "eroded" in the "absence of clarity and strategic focus".

He adds that Government "must not leave the digital economy in limbo for the next two" years while it negotiates Britain's withdrawal from the European Union.

Mr Wright said:

"The Government's digital strategy was due last summer, six months later than expected, and we are still waiting. I hope this means that it will coincide and be consistent with the wider Government Industrial Strategy, but I'm not going to hold my breath on that one.

The digital economy makes a vital contribution to the UK's prosperity. It will play an ever large part in ensuring companies stay relevant to their markets and customers, will create new business models and types of jobs and lift the UK's productivity and competitiveness. Technology and innovation is not standing still and in the absence of clarity and a strategic focus, Britain will be left behind and our great advantage in the current digital economy will be eroded.

The Government must not leave the digital economy in limbo for the next two years."

He added: "We do not want regulation that stifles innovation and growth in the digital economy but there must be a level playing field and protections for consumers and workers."

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