UK companies ‘under-invest’ in IT, Tory says

The government needs to do more to encourage UK companies to invest in IT systems, according the chair of the Conservative Technology Forum.

The government needs to do more to encourage UK companies to invest in IT systems, according the chair of the Conservative Technology Forum.

Malcolm Harbour, who is also part of the West Midlands Conservative MEP team, said that compared with other countries in Europe, the UK "under-invests" in technology.

He said that the Labour government had allowed investment in technology to slip down its list of priorities.

"The government started off with intentions of giving technology a high priority, but it has become a bit more disaffected over the years. It is sometimes rather difficult to see exactly what direction their policy is now going in," he said.

Harbour said he would like to see public procurement being used more strategically. "We would like to see public procurement put more into play as a vehicle for encouraging technological investment," he said.

The Conservative policy for IT is based on "David Cameron's themes", with a focus on localising services, Harbour said.

"We would like to see how technology can be used to support bringing more responsibility to local communities and citizens, and allowing them to make more decisions and access services at a local level," he said.

"Trends in technology systems seem to be working in favour of that approach, whereas they seem to be going against having a very centralised approach."

Two main issues the Conservatives will be focusing on are security, including issues such as e-crime and privacy, as the government looks at putting more citizen information on national databases. "I am not sure we are really doing enough to protect our critical national IT infrastructure," Harbour said.




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