The Minister of Regional Development and European Union Funds, Nataša Tramišak, today visited the Ruđer Bošković Institute (RBI) and met with the Institute's Director General, Dr David M. Smith. The aim of Minister Tramišak's visit was to acknowledge the successful implementation of European projects at the RBI, in particular the major structural project O- ZIP, worth 72 million euros. The Minister was also introduced to research and development projects funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) and carried out by the Institute in collaboration with companies to develop new products and technologies, as well as the Scientific Centre of Excellence for Marine Bioprospecting (BioProCro).
"I would like to take this opportunity to commend all the activities that have been carried out at the Ruđer Bošković Institute. The Institute has truly become the largest research institute in the Republic of Croatia during this period and serves as a prime example of the link between industry and science by carrying out high-quality projects in excellent cooperation with the business sector, which is of great importance for us," said Minister Tramišak.
In the coming financial period, around 8.8 billion Croatian kuna has been earmarked for the priority area 'Strengthening the economy by investing in research and innovation, promoting business competitiveness, digitalisation and developing skills for smart specialisation' Minister Tramišak is looking forward to new high-quality projects by the Ruđer Bošković Institute and other scientific research institutes, which will undoubtedly contribute to the economic growth of the Republic of Croatia.
As the period for the realisation and implementation of projects contracted within the 2014-2020 timeframe is coming to an end, the Ministry of Regional Development and EU Funds (MRRFEU) is visiting contracted projects of great importance for Croatia with the aim of accelerating activities and completing as much as possible in the next two years.
During her visit, Minister Tramišak held a working meeting with the Director and representatives of the Institute. She also visited the scientific centre of excellence for marine bioprospecting - BioProCro, where she familiarised herself with the centre's activities and research.
"The Ruđer Bošković Institute currently has ten projects under contract within the R&D programme, the total value of which exceeds 37 million Croatian kuna. Such projects are crucial for strengthening Croatia's competitiveness through innovation and new products, and confirm that a competitive economy based on innovative products can only be achieved through systematic policies that channel funds into education, science and business," said Dr David M. Smith, RBI Director.
"The Ministry of Regional Development and European Union Funds is making great efforts to make the best use of the resources available to us from European funds, particularly the ESIF. Through the results achieved, the Ruđer Bošković Institute has repeatedly proven to be a valuable partner, possessing the necessary knowledge, human resources and research capacity. As confirmation of this, last year the RBI signed a contract for the major O- ZIP project, funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the Operational Programme 'Competitiveness and Cohesion 2014-2020' After seven decades, this investment in the Institute's infrastructure will provide state-of-the-art laboratories comparable to those of the leading research institutes in the EU," Dr Smith emphasised.
Prior to the visit to the Centre of Excellence, the Minister held a working meeting with representatives of the Institute, attended by the Chair of the RBI Scientific Council, Dr Iva Bogdanović Radović, and Deputy Directors Dr Ivanka Jerić, Dr Marijeta Kralj and Dr Vilko Smrečki. During the meeting, the Minister was informed about scientific research at the Institute. She pledged her full support to the scientists and expressed her satisfaction with the partnership between the Institute and the Ministry, which brought the IRB the major project O- ZIP, financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the Operational Programme 'Competitiveness and Cohesion 2014-2020' After seven decades, this investment in the Institute's infrastructure will provide state-of-the-art laboratories comparable to those of leading research institutes in the EU.
Currently, the Institute carries out around 300 competitive scientific projects, including numerous research projects under the European Commission's Horizon 2020 programme and projects funded by the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF). Since the start of the Horizon 2020 programme, the Institute has secured 37 projects with a contract value of €16.1 million, while the IRB has realised a portfolio of 43 projects worth over €22 million under the ESIF programme.
In addition, last year the Institute signed a contract for the large-scale O- ZIP project worth €72 million, the fourth largest ESIF-funded project in Croatia. This investment in the Institute's infrastructure will enable Ruđer Bošković's researchers to obtain world-class laboratories comparable to those of the leading research institutes in the EU.
DISCLAIMER: The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the Ruđer Bošković Institute and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.