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Belarus and Slovakia to hold contest of joint scientific-technical projects

Belarus and Slovakia to hold contest of joint scientific-technical projects

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Belarus and Slovakia to hold contest of joint scientific-technical projects

Belarus and Slovakia will hold the contest of joint scientific-technical projects in priority areas of the bilateral cooperation, including in the field of energy, information technology, nanotechnology, biotechnology, medicine and pharmacy. This was discussed at the first session of the Belarusian-Slovakian Commission on cooperation in the field of science and technology headed by Alexander Shumilin, Chairman of the State Committee on Science and Technology of the Republic of Belarus, and Olga Nakhtmanova, secretary of the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports of the Slovakian Republic.

Besides, the parties agreed to establish mutual contacts with technological parks of Belarus and Slovakia and work out the possibility of the extension of the implementation of joint projects, including within the program of the European Union on Science and Innovation “Horizon 2020”. ‘The Belarusian national priority areas in the areas of science, technology and innovation largely coincide with the Slovak ones. Therefore we have a significant potential for the implementation of mutually beneficial projects not only with Slovakia, but also with Europe,’ Alexander Shumilin said. According to him, currently, Belarusian and Slovak organizations are jointly implementing five projects for a total of more than 470 thousand USD under the Horizon 2020 program. At the same time, they previously implemented 15 projects worth more than 3.5 million USD.

‘The inclusion of the subjects focused on the cooperation with partners from Slovakia within the mutually agreed priorities in the composition of themes of the contest will contribute to a significant increase in the activity of applicants and will increase the effectiveness of the allocation of European grants,’ stressed Alexander Shumilin. It should be noted that the innovative infrastructure, which includes 14 scientific and technological parks, 9 technology transfer centers, research and production centers and holdings in the structure of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus and branch ministries, is dynamically developed in Belarus. The main activities of the residents of technology parks are instrument making, engineering, electronics, information technology, software development, medicine, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, R & D works, optics, laser technology, energy, energy saving, bio and nanotechnology.

In turn, Marek Hayduk, head of the department of science and technology of the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sports of the Slovak Republic, noted the importance of expanding bilateral cooperation in order to hold the joint research and implement bilateral projects, including those involving other European countries. ‘Science and innovation are important components for such small states as Slovakia and Belarus. Therefore, we must choose projects that will be most effective and effective for all the interested,’ he said. Marek Hayduk also said that Slovakia allocates around 740 million euros for the science and implementation of scientific and technical projects. This is about 0.8% of GDP.

Reference: Belarusian and Slovak organizations carry out the following projects within Horizon 2020, the European Union program on science and innovation:

  • Giant, research and educational network, (JIPI NAS of Belarus and the Association of Users of the Slovak Academic Data Network SANET);

  • the transnational cooperation of the national contact points of the EU program "Information and Communication Technologies" (SI "BelISA and the Center for Scientific and Technical Information of the Slovak Republic");

  • the transnational cooperation between national contact points on socio-economic and humanitarian disciplines (BSU and the Center for Scientific and Technical Information of the Slovak Republic);

  • the establishment of the European communication channel with Latin America (JIPI NAS of Belarus and the Association of Users of the Slovak Academic Data Network SANET);

  • the multifunctional polymer composites doped with new 2D nanoparticles for extended use (BSU and Polymer Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences).

For example, Grafen, the flagship initiative of the European Commission, with a budget of 1 billion euros belongs to the largest projects involving Belarus.

The program employs 142 research centers and companies from 26 countries in Europe. Belarus, represented by the Institute of Nuclear Problems of the Belarusian State University, is the only country that is not a member of the EU among them. The first phase of the Grafen program was funded by the 7th Framework Program. As a result of its implementation, Belarus secured a place in the second phase of the project, which received the support from the budget of the Horizon 2020 program.