The strategy says that 10-15 per cent non-native species established in Great Britain cause significant adverse impacts, and while it says animals tend to be more invasive than plants, it notes that Japanese knotweed alone is estimated to cost the British economy around £166 million per year.
It highlights the impact of invasive aquatic plants, for example, by clogging water bodies and preventing access for navigation and angling.
The strategy includes taking the approach of "horizon scanning" to identify threats likely to come into the country. "We will continue to foster this approach, being mindful of developments across Europe, as well as other approaches to biosecurity, particularly the Plant Health Risk Register," it says.
Preventing the introduction and establishment of new invasive species is established as a high priority. "We will seek to identify and give priority to those pathways that pose the greatest risk and develop Pathway Action Plans for priority pathways.Integration with the existing biosecurity regimes (plant, animal, bee health etc) will be strengthened."
The strategy notes that the UK is the first EU Member State to develop biocontrol agents for invasive non-native plant species - Japanese knotweed and Himalayan balsam - and is funding similar efforts for other invasive non-native plants. Local Action Groups have also been helpful in tackling invasive species including Himalayan balsam.
Water primrose (Ludwigia grandiflora), an ornamental plant associated with wetlands and the margins of watercourses is given as an example of successful eradication action.
An eradication campaign co-ordinated by the Environment Agency began in 2009 and to date the plant has been eradicated from three of the 23 sites where it has been found and control at the rest is continuing.
It adds that to date, the cost of removal has been less than £50,000 with costs being kept low by the use of volunteers and landowners.