The government has revealed a brand new long-term strategy that it hopes will make the UK an even stronger factor in the offshore wind industry. Westminster has teamed up with businesses in the sector to deliver an outlook for the coming years that focuses on growing the country's presence in this market. The government has suggested the multi-million pound investment it will make in offshore wind generation could lead to a £7 billion boom for the British economy by 2020. Several sums will be handed over from various government bodies to back this movement. For instance, the Regional Growth Fund has agreed to stump up £20 million to support the improvement of the nation's wind industry supply chain, while a further £46 million will be paid to link innovation between the government, the industry and academia. Nick Clegg, deputy prime minister, joined energy secretary Ed Davey this week to officially launch the strategy. They did so at the opening of a new wind farm off the coast of Lincolnshire. Mr Clegg said: "The race is now on to lead the world in clean, green energy. As an island nation, and with our weather, the UK is ideally placed to make the most of offshore wind energy - you could say it was a technology designed for us. "This strategy will help keep Britain as the world leader in one of the most important industries of the 21st century." As well as making the country money and supporting a cleaner, greener generation of energy in the UK, the country's employment market stands to gain from the move. That is because the government believes the wind energy industry has the potential to create about 20,000 energy jobs. There will also be changes to the way new wind farms are developed in the UK, with the government detailing the need for those above a certain size to first submit a supply chain plan before they are able to attain a Contract for Difference.
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