On Tuesday 21st February Kit Malthouse MP, chair of the All Party Group for Life Science, hosted Minerva Communications from Andover for their CommBeBiz conference of bioeconomy firms and researchers at Portcullis House at the Houses of Parliament.
The ‘bioeconomy’ refers to industries such as forestry, agribusiness, marine sciences, food and biotechnology. The aim of the grouping is to encourage collaboration between hitherto separate disciplines and lines of scientific inquiry.
After an introduction from Kit, Stephen Metcalfe MP, chair of the Science and Technology Select Committee, took the stage to outline the role of the committee and the steps it sees as necessary to take advantage of British scientific prowess.
He made the case for openness and for “mobility of the science community” to be “an absolute priority in the forthcoming negotiations.” Stephen also urged the Government to make sure that science’s interests are protected in the Brexit negotiations “with the urgent appointment of a Chief Scientific Officer to the Department for Exit from the EU”.
At the event Kit Malthouse commended the Government for the extra money pledged in the Autumn Statement for research and development and advocated reforms to compliment this commitment with private investment into scientific ventures.