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Ministry for Innovation and Technology: Renewalof the innovation system is moving in the right direction
29 October 2019
Modified: 31 October 2019
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“The renewal of the innovation system is moving in the right direction: while Hungary spent only 1.35 percent of GDP on research and development (R&D) in 2017, last year’s total R&D spending was 1.53 percent of GDP (HUF 654 billion), and this ratio is expected to reach the target of 1.8 percent next year”, State Secretary József Bódis of the Ministry for Innovation and Technology said at a press conference in Budapest on Monday.

“The successful functioning of the system is also indicated by the fact that the headcount of researchers working in Hungary exceeded 66 thousand last year”, the State Secretary added. Zoltán Birkner, President of the National Research, Development and Innovation Office (NRDIO) highlighted: the success of the renewal of the innovation system is also proven by the fact that Hungarian-owned small and medium-sized enterprises have appeared in the business research & development landscape.

Last year, the number of research and development organisations increased by 12 percent to 3500, of which 2000 belong to the private sector, and of these 7 percent were linked to large corporations, while the remainder were operated by small and medium sized businesses. Enterprises spent HUF 494 billion forints (EUR 1.5 billion) on R&D activities last year, with 53 percent of this sum utilised by large companies and 46 percent by SMEs, he told the press.

“The most important task of the government and the NRDIO is to reinforce the link between the market and university and state research institutes, to increase the role of enterprises in the financing of the research and development projects being realised in research institutes”, he stated.

The realisation of these goals will also be facilitated by the regular university ecosystem tenders recently launched by the Lóránt Eötvös Research Network, the Zoltán Bay Research Institute and the NRDIO, he added.

Mr. Birkner noted that last year universities and state research institutes spent HUF 83 billion (EUR 252 million) and HUF 71 billion (EUR 216 million) respectively on research, development and innovation, and 5-6 percent of this expenditure was financed by the market, a ratio which the administration would like to at least double in the upcoming years.

According to the press release distributed by the NRDIO at the press conference, if research institutes and higher education institutes seek relations with external partners, their research results can be better commercialised on the market. The thorough renewal of the research and innovation system is aimed at ensuring that “the ratio of R&D expenditure to GDP reaches at least 30 percent by 2030, and Hungary becomes a knowledge-based, balanced and sustainable economy and society that generates high added value” the press release says.

Budapest, 28 October 2019, Monday (MTI)

Updated: 31 October 2019
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