Sign-off will begin €7 billion in investments, with research and innovation a major focus
EU finance ministers have informally approved the Czech Republic’s plan for its share of the bloc’s €750 billion pandemic recovery fund, from which the country’s government has allocated €322m to R&D and innovation.
Ministers said on 6 September that they planned to give final approval to the Czech government’s €7bn plan for spending and reforms, making the final sign-off a formality. The plan has already been approved by the European Commission.
The plan has six main policy areas, of which R&D and innovation is one. Within that area, it allocates €196m to health R&D in priority fields, including infectious diseases and cancer. A further €126m is allocated to supporting R&D in companies, of which about €19m is earmarked to help them do work aligned with the EU R&D programme, Horizon Europe.
A Commission assessment of the Czech research system found that public R&D funding was “adequate”, but that “fragmentation” of the public research sector was a source of inefficiency.
“It is essential to underpin the public R&D investment by structural and comprehensive reforms, such as setting up an efficient governance and coordination mechanism for research and innovation policy at national level,” the Commission said.