The Budget: Fully Driverless Cars on UK Roads by 2021

This week, Chancellor Philip Hammond's Autumn Budget announced government support for driverless cars. Amid pledges of £540m to electric and autonomous vehicles, he told the House of Commons "Our future vehicles will be driverless". This comes after comments earlier in the week assuring regulatory changes that would allow fully autonomous cars on British roads by 2021.

“The Chancellor was right to give the go-ahead for driverless cars," Douglas Hansen-Luke, Executive Chairman of Future Planet Capital told Reuters in response to the news. "A human driving a lethal weapon is not a good idea. Road deaths are the world’s biggest cause of premature death with over 1.2 million dying annually. Automated cars are far safer than people.”

“What the budget doesn’t address, however, are the approximately 140 million employed globally as professional drivers. Any government support of artificial intelligence and robots needs to simultaneously take account of likely job losses.”