Industry figures welcome DTI funding

Leading figures from the UK motorsport industry have welcomed the Department of Trade & Industry's £16m funding to implement the various recommendations of its Motorsport Competitiveness Panel [July 11]. MIA chief executive Chris Aylett said: "Although the UK's motorsport industry has been the strongest in the world, ongoing support from central and local government is essential if we are to respond effectively to growing competition from overseas."

Industry figures welcome DTI funding

Aylett added: "Few other sports can compare with motorsport in delivering rapid social and economic benefits from public investment. The DTI has recognised that both the sport and the industry are interdependent, crucially feeding one another. Put simply, more competitors will create more jobs.

"Education and training programmes are central to the new proposals and they will be crucial for growing the intake of skilled personnel, as well as for developing the capabilities of those already employed. We can now expect to see closer collaboration between businesses and educationalists in exploiting the unique and stimulating motorsport 'brand'. We can use motorsport to attract many more people to pursue courses and careers in technology and engineering."

MSA chief executive Colin Hilton said: "The future health of UK motorsport relies on securing the long-term futures of major events, developing the talents of those on the frontline of the sport, from drivers and engineers to officials and marshals, and expanding the opportunities for more people to get involved. The MSA looks forward to implementing and administering the DTI's initiatives within the sport."

Rob Baldock, global leader, financial service and president of Continental Europe at EDS, and the MIA's chairman, commented: "We in the industry are absolutely delighted to see how quickly and positively the Government has responded to the recommendations of the Motorsport Competitiveness Panel. The MIA will work with the new Government Motorsport Unit and associated bodies to ensure this much needed support is used to restore and enhance the competitiveness of the British Motorsport Industry."

Peter Digby, MD of Xtrac and MIA vice-chairman, said: "It is great news to hear that the Government is acknowledging the importance of the UK Motorsport Industry and increasing its financial support at a very critical time. The industry makes a major contribution to UK exports and helps maintain our excellent engineering heritage."

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