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UK is missing out on billion dollar environmental market says EIC

MORE THAN 80% of the environmental industry believes government support for environmental technology exporters is inadequate, according to a new report.

The findings, from the Environmental Industries Commission's 2002 export survey, have been fed into the governmentbacked Innovation and Growth Team, an initiative aimed at promoting the UK's environmental industry.

The EIC says the problem must be tackled or the UK will miss out on the huge opportunities in the $515 billion (£336bn) global market for environmental technology.

A recent DTI environmental export report claimed 'the UK has not kept pace with overall EU performance in increasing environmental exports'. The UK's 4.7% share of the world market compares poorly with France's 7% and Germany's 11%.

The survey also found a lack of knowledge of government environmental export promotion schemes such as the DTI/DEFRA Joint Environmental Markets Unit (JEMU) and the Technology Partnership Initiative (TPI) in the UK or the EU's Regional Institute of Environmental Technology.

Only 25% of companies responding to the survey used JEMU/TPI initiatives, and only 5% used EU initiatives.

'This survey shows that it is vital the UK government does more to ensure the UK is a leading player in addressing the huge opportunities that are being created across the globe, ' said EIC chairman Adrian Wilkes.

The EIC wants the government to promote the environmental export industry and to provide better information on international market opportunities.

It is calling for more help from British embassies and consulates in identifying the best local contacts; more aid support for major environmental capital projects; and easier access to UK and EU export support programmes.

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