The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Serbian Government have signed today in Belgrade a EUR 200 million loan for the Public Sector Research and Development (R&D) project. The loan will be implemented through the Ministry of Science and Technological Development. The EIB was represented by Dario Scannapieco, Vice-President responsible for operations in Italy, Malta and the Western Balkans, and Serbia by its President Mr Boris Tadic, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Science and Technological Development, Mr Bozidar Djelic, and the Minister of Finance, Ms Diana Dragutinovic.

The project, with an estimated investment cost of EUR 420 million, concerns a series of investments aimed at revitalising the country’s public R&D activity. The investments include the upgrading of existing infrastructure, the creation of a center for promotion of science, the construction of accommodations for students and young scientists accommodation and creation of centres of excellence in priority research fields.

The specific measures included in this programme have three objectives:

  • to develop the infrastructure for public sector scientific research in Serbia;
  • to create working and living conditions that will enable those trained to the highest levels to compete and collaborate with the international scientific community;
  • to attract some of the leading Serbian scientists currently working abroad back to Serbia.

The project is fully in line with the EIB’s lending priorities for the strengthening and development of activities in support of the Candidate and Potential Candidate Countries.

In Serbia there are about 8 500 scientists involved in research work that is being carried out in 58 registered scientific and research institutes and 114 faculties. Most of the institutes are funded by the State.

The project supports and is consistent with the Serbian Government’s Strategy of Science and Technological Development, which lays down the strategic priorities of Serbia’s science policy for the period 2010-2015.

Note to editors:

The European Investment Bank, the long-term financing institution of the European Union, supports viable capital investment projects furthering the policy objectives of the Union. In the countries of the Western Balkans, the financing operations of the EIB contribute to facilitating the integration process with the European Union. Since 2001, the EIB has extended EUR 2.6 billion in favour of projects in Serbia.