UK budget aims for driverless cars by 2021

London - British finance minister Philip Hammond is to announce £75m in funding for Artificial Intelligence and plans to put driverless cars on UK roads by 2021, in his budget speech on Wednesday.

Hammond will announce regulation changes to allow Britain's driverless car industry, which the government estimates will be worth £28bn by 2035, to get cars on the road within as little as three years, according to extracts of the budget released by his office on Sunday.

"Some would say that is a bold move, but I believe we have to embrace these technologies if we want to see Britain leading the next industrial revolution," he said.

The minister, who is under pressure to deliver an eye-catching budget following Brexit spats with cabinet colleagues, will also announce a £400m for companies hoping to roll out electric-car charge points across the country.

People who want to buy a battery-electric vehicle will also be able to access funding as Britain attempts to move towards zero-emission transport.

With a focus on tech industries, the government is also planning to spend £75m supporting companies developing AI and £160m in developing 5G technology, which it believes will be necessary for the mass rollout of driverless cars.


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