Approval of applications to the NSRF will be accelerated

Sapo opens laboratory at the University of Aveiro

The Deputy Secretary of State for Industry and Innovation, António de Castro Guerra, said today that 1529 company projects were submitted to the QREN – National Strategic Reference Framework, for a total amount of 3 billion euros. António de Castro Guerra guaranteed that the first decisions will be taken soon, with an anticipation of the deadlines in relation to what was defined, reducing by 21 days the communication of the approval of the applications.

According to the Deputy Secretary of State for Industry and Innovation, «next Monday we will demonstrate» this reduction in deadlines.

«The delivery of projects to the QREN was significant, denying the ‘Velhos do Restelo’ who said that nobody would join because the deadlines were too short», said António de Castro Guerra at the opening session of the Innovation Marketplace, an event that is taking place today in the Lisbon Congress Center, in Junqueira.

Still referring to figures, the secretary of Esatdo said that 150 R&D projects were delivered and reinforced the idea that the NSRF is an instrument for the Innovation and Competitiveness of companies, although it is not the solution.

Still this quarter, new complementary instruments for innovation will be presented, among which the «Vale de R&DT» and «Vale de Inovação» stand out, which aim to improve the connection between SMEs and scientific and technological institutions. A qualification phase is already underway for these institutions, which have the capacity and availability to provide services to SMEs, a process that started on February 15th and will end in mid-March.

In a second phase – which will start in May – SMEs can apply, in a competition that the Secretary of State guaranteed is «simple, with little paperwork» to these vouchers, paying 1/4 of the service fee requested to the institutions , the rest being borne by the NSRF which pays directly to previously qualified scientific or technological institutions.

During the official opening of the Innovation Marketplace, Jorge Rocha de Matos, president of AIP-CE, which co-organizes the event, underlined that in addition to the incentives that the incentive systems can provide «it is necessary to go further». «Above all, an adequate articulation of ‘good’ public policies and business strategies based on intensive knowledge is fundamental», he adds.

Fatima Hunter

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