Chancellor George Osborne today told delegates at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester that the government will step up investment in high performance computing (HPC).

"We will invest £145 million in High Performance Computing and the associated e-infrastructure," he said. "This will make the UK a world leader in supercomputing. Improving computing infrastructure is vital to driving growth and giving businesses confidence to invest in the UK."

The news comes as the government said it was taking other steps to bolster the country’s technology infrastructure, including making a £150 million investment to improve mobile phone coverage from 95 to 99 percent of the country.

Osborne said that the BAE Systems sites in Brough, Warton and Samlesbury, the most heavily hit by 3,000 job cuts announced by the company last week, will be turned into enterprise zones to develop new businesses and to maintain as much as possible of the technical expertise.

The government is also investing £50 million in graphene, in order to improve commercial opportunities for the material that could be used in touchscreens and computer circuitry.

The headline financial measure for the taxpayer, however, was a freeze on council tax for a second year.