President Hoyer urges more investment in innovation
6 June 2018
Speaking at the annual Science|Business Framework conference in Brussels, EIB President Hoyer said that Europe must lift investment by at least EUR 300 billion each year in innovation if it wants to catch up with the US and the leading economies in Asia. The President called for more and better investments in science, research and development to make Europe’s economy more competitive and more resilient.
According to the EIB’s investment survey, innovative young firms are 50 percent less likely than other firms to get credit, making it “phenomenally hard” for a small company with an innovative idea to become a successful innovator. “Small firms may introduce an innovative product, but they lack growth finance and, in a very stringent business environment, are unable to invest and grow,” he said.
He welcomed the European Commission’s proposal for the next Multiannual Financial Framework including the increased budget of EUR 100 billion for the new EU’s flagship Research Programme, Horizon Europe. But he added, “much more funding would still be needed to lift Europe’s innovation investments to the required levels.”
President Hoyer underlined the European Commission and EIB’s longstanding experience with dedicated financial instruments for research and innovation. He stressed the importance of joint risk-sharing financial instruments as “powerful tools” to step up investments in innovation in Europe.
The EIB President ended his keynote address saying that higher investments in innovation are the only way for Europe’s economy and society to maintain its wealth and role in the world.
The Annual Science|Business Framework conference held in Brussels, debated the policies and programmes Europe will need for long-term prosperity – across all sectors. Keynote speakers included European Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger and Mariana Mazzucato, economics professor at University College London.
The EIB Group has stepped up its level of precaution at its headquarters in Luxembourg and in its external offices. All staff will telework as of 16 March. A small number of staff whose physical presence on EIB premises is indispensable will continue to be present on the EIB campus. The decision aims to protect the health of employees and ensure the continuity of the EIB Group’s activity.
On Wednesday the EIB identified its first case of one staff member who tested positive for corona virus.
As a precautionary measure, the EIB decided not to hold the meeting of its Board of Directors planned for Thursday 12 March in person. Decisions on the Board’s agenda will be taken by written procedure. The Bank has put in place measures to prevent disruption to its governance or operation approval schedule.
On Monday 2 March, the former President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, visited the EIB in Luxembourg on a joint invitation from the Bank, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) and the Court of Auditors.