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Grant Thornton cleantech report released

posted Jun 21, 2012, 2:14 AM by ema-1 ema-1   [ updated Jun 21, 2012, 2:15 AM ]
"Nathan Goode said: “From this analysis, cleantech appears to have parallels with the biotech industry, in that R&D is being used to explore new concepts and applications for existing technologies. As a result R&D and IT are receiving greater focus as companies exploit advances in areas such as storage and smart grid technologies. In addition the sector is adopting a broader base on which to apply its learning, putting greater focus on areas such as waste and water.”

In contrast, manufacturing activity has become relatively more subdued. The number of businesses citing involvement in manufacturing of energy efficient products has decreased from 26% to 19%, although manufacturing of products for cleantech energy generation has increased marginally to 17%, up from 14% the previous year. There could be a number of reasons for this, but the Grant Thornton report stresses that the issue of capital constraint represents a big challenge for the sector and, as a result, governments.

Nathan Goode added: “The manufacturing of items such as wind turbines and waste processing plants is an incredibly capital intensive business. However, what we’re seeing is a slowing in the pace of growth as a result of constraints on raising capital. This continues to be an issue, especially in European economies where credit is constrained.

“Governments must be mindful of this issue acting as a brake on investment, as it will quickly become a barrier to achieving carbon reduction targets and the desire to supply businesses and households with alternative supplies of energy – and at a time when cleantech is really starting to compete.”"