“Research and Innovation are key. Investments in research and innovation, without being over-prescriptive, can be directed towards key socio-economic systems that will lead to sustainable growth. The challenge will be finding the right balance between bottom-up innovations stemming from the market and public policies. It is important to consider that innovation-led transformations also take into account the inevitable HR and re-skilling needs,” said Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri.
On Thursday, the EU Ministers responsible for research met in Helsinki to exchange views on the key strategic elements for EU’s growth and competitiveness. This meeting served as a forum to shape the future agenda of the European Union as well as the new Commission’s priorities for the coming years.
During the first session, the Ministers discussed research and innovation for innovation-led sustainable growth. To remain a globally relevant actor, the EU needs to keep up with the new wave of innovation, to be able to move quickly and decisively to meet the demands for continuous and ongoing transformation.
Parliamentary Secretary Schembri remarked that, “innovations, in general, need to be supported, especially if we want to ensure that the lower performing regions catch up. If industries are also expected to embrace sustainability and follow government-driven policy, the need is even stronger. There is an urgent need for a more R&I friendly state aid regulations to better support innovation. This must be achieved by moving away from the one-size fits all approach. Less bureaucracy, more simplification and increased flexibility are key to support innovation-led transactions.”
Parliamentary Secretary Schembri also had a bilateral meeting with Portuguese Minister for Science, Technology and Higher Education, Manuel Heitor. Both discussed a possible economic collaboration in the areas of space, digital technology and research. Both Ministers shall meet again with a view to formalise a collaborative agreement between both countries.