Dr. Ildikó Kovács, Director General of the NIH’s Department for International Affairs, and Dr. Arabinda Mitra, head of the DST’s International Bilateral Cooperation Division were the co-chairpersons of the event. The economic and commercial counsellor of the Embassy of Hungary to India was also present at the meeting as a delegate on the Hungarian side.
13 and 15 joint S&T project proposals have been received until the deadline by the Hungarian and the Indian side, respectively as a result of the latest call for proposals, announced on July 16th, 2013 on the Hungarian side.
The Parties laid down their agreement in the Minutes of the meeting that, at the request of the Indian side, they will reopen the call for proposals. This way, in contrast to the previous, relatively short duration, it has now become possible for potential applicants to submit their joint project proposals in due quantity and quality (thoroughly elaborated, i.e.) from both the Hungarian and the Indian sides in the near future. The new call may be announced in November 2013 the earliest.
The participants have identified the following cooperative S&T areas as the most promising: electronics & optics, mathematics & computational science, green chemistry (including catalysis), biomedicine, water management and purification, environmental protection, as well as agri-biotechnology.
Besides the aforementioned results, representatives of the NIH and the DST finalised the wording of the Letter of Intent on the renewal of the bilateral Strategic Research Fund, established in 2008. The extension pertains to the duplication of the available pool of the Fund from the previous 1 million Euros each to 2 million Euros each, annually. The Letter of Intent was signed by Mr. Mihály Varga, Minister of National Economy (on behalf of the NIH) and Preneet Kaur, Minister of State for External Affairs, in the presence of the two Prime Ministers on October 17th, 2013. The Research and Technology Innovation Fund (KTIA) serves as the cover of the bilateral fund on the Hungarian side, from which meritable joint S&T projects are granted.