Press Release on the Report by the Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation

Annual Report by the Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation:
Procurement with a Focus on Innovation Helps to Strengthen Small and Medium-sized Enterprises in Germany

BIO Deutschland, the German sector association of the biotechnology industry, welcomes the report by the Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation that was published on 27 February 2013. The commission expressly points out that “public-sector procurement too often (falls back on) established or less innovative solutions”. However, procurement with a focus on innovation can enhance the pace of innovation and thus foster a country’s competitiveness.

“In public tenders and the economic activities of scientific institutes, existing markets with innovative services and products should be taken into account to a greater extent,” said Peter Heinrich, Chairman of the Board of BIO Deutschland. “If innovations are excluded from procurement, this has a detrimental effect on Germany’s competitiveness as a business location.” Heinrich pointed out that the report by the Commission of Experts for Research and Innovation clearly shows that there is still significant potential in Germany for stimulating innovation activities in procurement. He said that the promotion of specific technologies, such as the promising biotechnology sector, is an aim that should be firmly pursued.

BIO Deutschland also calls for the collaboration between research and industry to be strengthened. The association published a position paper on this topic in 2011. If research and industry can be dovetailed so that the obstacles in the innovation process are overcome, the work by scientists and research-based companies will result in valuable products and services for users.

Furthermore, the Commission of Experts reiterated its call for private-sector innovation incentives to be improved and for parameters for venture capital financing to be drawn up. It also said that tax incentives for research and development (R&D), which help to support the R&D activities of innovative small and medium-sized companies, should be introduced. However, this should supplement, rather than replace, the Federal Government’s current project funding. BIO Deutschland supports these demands and also regards them as fundamental objectives for a competitive economy.

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