Brexit, Science and Innovation

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:29 pm on 6th September 2018.

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Photo of Vicky Ford Vicky Ford Conservative, Chelmsford 2:29 pm, 6th September 2018

I agree that the whole team is important, but it is also important that we invest in training for some of those support staff. In the past, previous Governments have perhaps not invested enough in ensuring that we can provide technological backup and support—lab assistance and so on—but over the past few years there has been a huge amount more investment in that in the UK, especially in the geographic areas where those jobs tend to exist. Having the team move is important as well because, as we saw at St Thomas’, one lead brings the other.

During its work, the Committee heard about good practice in other parts of the EU, and leaving the EU will give us an opportunity to look at good practice in other parts of the world. We were also told by several experts that the UK Government had done some very helpful things, such as unlocking tier 2 visas and Rutherford fellowships, for example. We must make sure, however, that when we bring in a new visa system we do not lose the good easy movement we already have within the EU. We must continue that together.

To conclude, this report is an excellent report and the strategy the Government are putting in place today is entirely in line with its conclusions and recommendations. The negotiations in Brussels are key to our science and research, and that is key to our future.