UK government to invest in autonomous driving projects
The UK government is planning to invest USD33 million in six projects to accelerate the growth of autonomous driving. These projects will involve testing of autonomous vehicles on highways and trials of remote-control parking. This is part of the UK industrial strategy that aims to transform the transport system of the future. UK industrial strategy after Brexit strongly focuses on artificial intelligence and autonomous vehicle development. According to gov.uk, gross direct contribution of connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV) and CAV technologies to UK gross value-added (GVA) would reach GBP6.9 billion and GBP1.2 billion, respectively, by 2035.
Significance: The UK government plans to be the leader in the field of self-driving and expects to launch first fully-driverless cars on roads by 2021. However, how it expects to gain this positon with such a tiny investment sum is not clear. In May 2018, the UK Department for Transport (DfT) announced that from June it will be legal to use remote-controlled parking in the UK. In March 2016, the UK government said that it would allow the testing of autonomous driving lorries on the country's motorway network. The government funded Oxbotica Ltd., a UK autonomous vehicle software company, to support the GBP13-million project. The project will programme fleets of autonomous vehicles that will run between London and Oxford.
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