New UK legislation realising the benefits of autonomous vehicles
Legislation passed recently by the UK Government, commits £100 million to ensuring the rollout of Autonomous Vehicles on UK roads by 2025. This presents a huge commercial opportunity for developers and makers of EVs via the multi- billion-pound market now open to them. We unpack the key points.
Connected & Automated Mobility (CAM) 2025 commits to a new legislative framework for safe autonomous vehicles, based on a series of recommendations made by the Law Commission. The key aim of the framework is to enable innovation whilst ensuring safety. This innovation will unlock technologies delivering huge economic benefits, attracting international investment, and reinforcing the UK’s place as a global science superpower.
The UK market alone is predicted to be worth as much as £42 billion by 2035, creating as many as 38,000 jobs in the sector. The UK is in an excellent position to secure the benefits of these new technologies, and they’re seen as central to the Government approach to Build Back Better from the COVID-19 pandemic. The UK wants to firmly establish itself as the global leader in the AV space. The UK’s Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles has helped secure over £400 million in funding to date, supporting over 90 projects involving 200 organisations.
The legislation sets out details of £100 million of new R&D funding (£66m in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and £34m in the Department for Transport (DfT)) to support commercial deployment of connected and self-driving technologies and the creation of a safety assurance framework.
It also gives details of funding which will support further development of the technologies as this industry moves towards commercialisation. It goes on to set out how connected and self-driving technologies can help create a more prosperous, safer, and greener future – and how the building blocks for this future will be put in place in the coming years.
“By 2025, the UK will begin to see deployments of self-driving vehicles, improving ways in which people and goods are moved around the nation and creating an early commercial market for the technologies. This market will be enabled by a comprehensive regulatory, legislative and safety framework, served by a strong British supply chain and skills base, and used confidently by businesses and the public alike.”
Core aims of the legislation
The legislation sets out three core aims and how they can be achieved:
- Self-driving vehicles are a key element of wider CAM technologies. The government has a clearly defined central role in ensuring the safety and security of self-driving road vehicles, their occupants and other road users.
- The UK will capture a significant share of the global CAM market via a combination of enabling frameworks including: commercialisation, skills and a strong collaboration between industry, academia and the public sector.
- CAM has huge potential to improve the way we travel and move goods. This will be explored and its contribution to “the society we want to see” will be evaluated.
You can explore the legislation more fully here.
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