The Department for Transport (DfT) has announced that driverless cars, drones and a commercial spaceport will be included in the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday 18 May.
The DfT went on record as saying that state-of-the-art technology is vital to both the UK economy and the commercial transport sector. It also added that its proposals, to be outlined in the Queen’s Speech, will help deliver a variety of new jobs.
With the driverless car market 16% year-on-year across the globe, analysts are predicting that it will be worth up to around £900 billion by 2025. With this in mind, the government wants to pass legislation to enable driverless car owners to insure them under standard policies.
Also announced by the DfT was a plan for a spaceport for launching satellites and commercial space tourism projects, which would raise revenues from the space sector from £12 billion to £40 billion by 2030, as long as the UK could account for around 10% of the global space market.
Patrick McLoughlin, the transport secretary for the DfT, said:
Driverless cars and commercial space flight might seem like something science fiction, but the economic potential of the new technology is huge, and I am determined the UK gets the maximum benefit.
If we want to propel Britain’s economy into the modern age, and generate the jobs that will come with it, is vital that the right rules are in place to allow new transportation to flourish. Having a long-term economic plan that works for the country means putting in place legislation that puts us at the heart of the modern transport revolution.
The DfT also said it was looking at options for expanding the private and commercial use of drones‚ an industry that could grow to around £55 billion worldwide, according to analysts.
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