UK cleantech firms lose confidence in govt policy

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Thursday, 20 January 2011 11:47 GMT

LONDON, Jan 20 (Reuters) - British-based companies involved in the country's green technology industry have lost confidence in the coalition government's ability to drive the sector forward, according to a report released on Thursday. Only 13 percent of 529 companies surveyed over the new year period believed the government will establish the right conditions for success in the cleantech sector this year, the latest poll compiled by consultancy Ernst & Young showed.

This compares with 38 percent of respondents who felt confident about the coalition government's support for investment in the sector , according to the previous poll between August and October 2010.

Since then, the government announced the toughest state spending cuts in a generation and made proposals for reforming the country's power market. [ID:nLDE6BF1BZ]

"These results are a wake-up call to a government that had set out to be 'the greenest ever'," said Steve Lang, Ernst & Young's UK cleantech leader.

"Although the Comprehensive Spending Review left the clean technology sector relatively unscathed, the market is now less confident that it will deliver the economic growth and jobs that Britain so urgently requires."

Fewer respondents also felt that investment in UK clean energy and technology would increase this year, with just over half of participants saying investment would rise this year, a 10 percent fall from the previous poll.

(Reporting by Karolin Schaps, editing by Jane Baird)

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