The government plans to invest heavily in innovation and research to drag the economy out of recession.

On the back of the Life Sciences Strategy announced by the Department for Business last week, a multi-million pound package to boost research and innovation in the UK has now been launched. The package aims to improve access to funding and facilities for new start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises (SME’s).

The funding is part of the government’s new Innovation and Research Strategy for Growth, which targets small businesses, who the government views as the key driving force behind economic improvement, and gives them access to the funding and facilities they require to expand and generate growth.

£75 million has been sidelined to improve the facilities and finance needed by businesses that are dependent on the latest technology, allowing them to develop and commercialise new products. On top of this, £25 million has been put aside to enable companies to build large-scale prototypes which can be showcased to attract outside investment.

Vince Cable, the business secretary, said: “The UK has renowned universities and research institutes and a proud record of invention – from the creation of life-saving medicines to the development of the internet.

“This strategy builds on our strengths by setting out how we will work with businesses and research bases to underpin private sector-led growth.”