Photo: Oleg Popov (EU2018BG)
The informal meeting of the ministers responsible for competitiveness in sections “Industry” and “Research” will be held on 1 and 2 February 2018. The meeting for the “Industry” section will be presided over by the Minister of Economy, Emil Karanikolov, and the “Research” section – by the Minister of Education and Science, Krasimir Valchev.
„Industry” section – 1 February 2018
The informal meeting for the Industry section will begin with a plenary session on 1 February 2018. The attendees will include ministers and representatives of all member-states of the European Union, as well as Switzerland and Norway, of the European Social and Economic Committee, of the European Committee of the Regions, as well as the business. The European Commission will be represented by Ms. Elżbieta Bieńkowskа, Commissioner for the Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs.
During the plenary session the ministers will consider the future of the European industrial policy by discussing the key factors which will shape the industry until 2030, at a global and European level, and what should be the common goals and key priorities for the new industrial strategy, in order to ensure that the European industry will be competitive in the contemporary environment. The Bulgarian presidency will work towards developing a clear long-term vision for the European industry until 2030 and after, which would result in more innovations in production, digitalization of the industry, job creation, improving the enterprises’ access to financing, and introducing sustainable technologies.
After the plenary session, two parallel work sessions will exchange opinions on the topics “Value chains and the development of competitive advantages for the European economy” and “New trends in industrial development – digitalization of the industry and the human dimension in the process of economic development”.
The first working session on the topic “Value chains and the development of competitive advantages for the European economy” will discuss the present competitive advantages of Europe, including infrastructure, technological knowledge or other characteristics, compared to other major economic partners, and how could these advantages be developed and strengthened in the most optimal manner, enduring the future competitive advantages for the European industry in a progressively more competitive global environment.
The second parallel working session “New trends in industrial development – digitalization of the industry and the human dimension in the process of economic development” is dedicated to the digital transformation of the industry and it will outline the European priorities in the process of transition to digitalization of the industry and the particular goals which could be set out in the future industrial strategy with respect to the development of digital skills and the promotion of digital entrepreneurship.
The agenda of the informal meeting for the “Industry” section plans for a work lunch for the ministers, during which they will discuss the challenges and opportunities for energy-intensive industries, as well as the digitalization and climate changes. The goal is for the overall discussion of the future, comprehensive and long-term industrial policy to pay special attention to the energy-intensive sector because they are an important part of the industrial basis of the EU.
„Research” section – 2 February 2018
The meeting on 2 February will be chaired by the Minister of Education and Science - Mr. Krasimir Valchev. The European Commissioner for Research and Innovation - Mr. Carlos Moedas will also participate in the meeting.
The Ministers will discuss the future of research and innovation in Europe, focusing on stimulating innovation and investing in human capital.
During the discussions on stimulating innovation, a common approach will be sought on key EU research and innovation issues such as support at national and regional level for cutting-edge innovation and their wider use - priorities that the EU and the Member States should commit to by supporting entrepreneurial and innovation culture and by strengthening the innovation ecosystem. The discussion will contribute to the design of a functioning European Innovation Council.
Discussions on investing in human capital in science will focus delegates' attention on implementing a systemic approach for researchers to acquire new skills for linking science and industry. Delegates will discuss opportunities to increase the attractiveness of scientific careers and achieve more optimal mobility of researchers through the European Framework for Career Development of Scientists. This dialogue will contribute to the formation of a European vision for investment in human capital in the next EU 9th Framework Program for Research and Innovation and the next generation of EU financial instruments such as Erasmus+, the European Social Fund and the European Regional Development Fund.