Devolution confusing for companies doing rocket science, claims Conservative MP
Devolution is hindering the development of a space industry in the UK by confusing companies who want to invest in the sector, a Conservative MP has claimed.
Writing in the Times, Lancashire MP David Morris said that the “key to saving the union could be in outer space” as it could “ensure alignment with the administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland”.
The chair of the Parliamentary Space Committee adds that while “the UK’s devolved governments have been quick to spot the space opportunity” in reality it was “not working as well as it should” as “the UK’s existing patchwork of regulations are creating problems”.
He called on the UK Government to “set the overall direction and co-ordinate activity with the devolved governments which are in danger of heading in different directions”.
“Without this clarity and coordination, devolved administrations will seek to fill the gaps, creating confusing regulatory overlaps and generating more bewilderment for businesses trying to operate in the sector,” he says.
“With a clear space strategy in place, we can ensure alignment with the administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Only then can we foster a fully-fledged space economy, with a launch capability that provides the last critical link in the value chain by connecting the UK to Low Earth Orbit.
“Space could be the UK’s post-Brexit poster child, in which we not only create a world-leading industry but also unite the Union through it.”