Commission aims to boost market for nanotechnology
By Nathalie Vandystadt | Wednesday 30 September 2009
A group of experts and a long-term strategy: this is what the European Commission proposes in a communication, adopted on 30 September, on boosting the market for key enabling technologies, such as nanotechnology, nanoelectronics or biotechnology.
Determined to exploit the potential of these multidisciplinary technologies, the EU executive will set up a high-level expert group tasked with developing a shared long-term strategy and coordinated actions at EU level, according to the specific maturity level of each technology.
These technologies will be needed, for example, for new medical treatments, the development of low or zero emission cars, for converting sunlight into energy, improving the food situation or for designing and constructing modern airplanes, the Commission said.
In the past, the EU has not effectively capitalised on its own R&D results and there are shortages of the skilled and highly educated scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs capable of exploiting the multidisciplinary nature of new high technologies, notes the EU executive.
“The EU needs a strong innovative drive to equip itself with the means needed to secure our future competitiveness and address the major societal challenges of this century,” said Industry and Enterprise Commissioner Günter Verheugen. “Mastering nanotechnology, micro- and nanoelectronics, biotechnology, new materials and photonics means being at the cutting edge – in the benefit of citizens.”
Based on the work of the high-level panel, the Commission will report to the Council by the end of 2010.