Global agri-tech companies met with the Government to drive further investment into the British farming industry.
The companies, which included the likes of BASF, Bayer Crop Science, Syngenta and Zoetis, discussed opportunities for investment in the industry at a roundtable hosted by International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox.
Agri-tech businesses are already revolutionising farming around the world, from hands-free harvesting to driverless vehicles, and drones to plant and tend to crops.
Hosted at 10 Downing Street, the event is the fourth in a series of Government investment roundtables which aims to promote UK industry sector opportunities to a global audience.
The meetings hope to drive foreign direct-investment into the UK as it nears Brexit day.
Ministers discussed the Government’s strategic vision for the UK agri-tech sector with senior executives from across the industry, whose companies in total employ 10,000 people across the UK.
The meeting follows the recently-published Agriculture Bill which provides an opportunity for agri-tech investors, aiming to help farmers deliver a cleaner and healthier environment through increased productivity and investment in the latest technology.
A new start-up visa, launching in Spring 2019, will also make the visa process faster for entrepreneurs to enter the UK.
Dr Fox said: “Today’s Agri-Tech roundtable is an excellent opportunity for the UK to further build on already strong relationships with investors, and for them to strengthen their ties with the UK science base and farming industry.
“As an international economic department, we want to work with investors across the world to embrace technology and make the UK a global leader in agricultural productivity, improve competitiveness and sustainability.
“In doing so, these investments will create jobs and prosperity for rural communities across the country.”
The roundtable follows news of the Government committing £30m for further rounds of the Countryside Productivity Small Grants scheme (CPSGS), which helps farmers buy new equipment to boost productivity.