Competitiveness (Internal Market, Industry and Research) Council: extracts from the joint press conference by Ondřej Liška and Janez Potocnik
Type: Summary of press conference
End production: 06/03/2009 First transmission: 06/03/2009
The European Ministers in charge of Research met in Brussels against the backdrop of the deepest economic and financial crisis, holding a public debate on the perspectives for the development of the European Research Area (the so-called "Ljubljana process). They emphasized the importance of research to booster Europe's economy. In the current situation, all Member States agreed that investment in high quality research is the basis for medium- and long- term competitiveness of the European economy.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||General view of the press conference
||SOUNDBITE (in Czech) by Ondřej Liška, Czech Minister for Education, Youth and Sports and President in office of the Council of the EU: We have concentrated on further steps to be taken to meet the challenge of 2020; we have emphasized the importance of research to booster Europe's economy; it is obvious that, in the current situation, all Member States agree that investment in high quality research is the basis for medium- and long-term competitiveness of the European economy, especially in the global context.
||SOUNDBITE (in English) by Janez Potocnik, Member of the EC in charge of Science and Research: There is a serious crisis but there is a way out of crisis and research and innovation are certainly part of that way; the Competitiveness Council adopted its contribution to the spring council key issues paper (on 5 March); I welcome strong statement that EU is going to invest in knowledge and research.
||Cutaway of press
||SOUNDBITE (in English) by Janez Potocnik, on the issue of research nationalism: We are living in a global world that is interconnected and interdependent and we certainly have to take into account that fact of life which is actually also changing the position of how Europe should look at our cooperation and how we should strengthen our efforts to be more competitive to cope with this changing world; our answer was going into the direction of research area; in Europe, we have four freedoms: freedom of movement, freedom of goods and services, freedom of capital and of people, and freedom in the internal market; there are some tensions that are coming in the times which are heavy and when people are loosing jobs, and we need to be vocal on that the opening is better answer than closing because closing would actually revert the process; my worry is that, in the process in which we are, in the opening of the research area and in all efforts that we are doing, we would make research area a reality because it is not yet a reality.