The UK’s share of the global water technology market could be worth £8.8bn by 2030 but urgent action is needed if it is to meet its potential, according to a report from the UK Water and Research Innovation Partnership (UKWRIP).

Currently the UK has just a 3 per cent share of the global market and must make substantial changes within the next three years if it is to catch up with countries such as France, the US, Japan and Germany.

The report says that the UK can boost its share to 10 per cent by 2030 if it takes steps, including focusing more on commercial opportunities and customer needs and increasing independent national testing.

A focus on validation and demonstration facilities and a co-ordinated international marketing strategy are also vital, according to UKWRIP.

Mark Lane, the report lead, said: “The economic and environmental case for raising the UK’s global game on water technology innovation is compelling. But we must act fast. If we don’t make significant changes within the next three years, our competitors will have pulled too far ahead to catch up with.”

According to the report, ‘HTech0: Tapping the Potential: A Fresh Vision for UK Water Technology’, the global market presents opportunities worth more than $50bn in the next six years.

In the report’s Foreword, Sir Mark Walport, government chief scientific advisor, said “I welcome the ‘UK plc’ approach to developing this report and the commitment to continuing this approach in the implementation of the findings and actions. This will result in a better alignment of research to market opportunities and valuable economic growth in the water technology sector.”