The Head of the European Union (EU) Delegation to Egypt, Ambassador Ivan Surkos and Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Dr. Khaled Abdel Ghafar opened today the 1st PRIMA Stakeholders' Forum. Partnership for Research and Innovation in the Mediterranean Area (PRIMA) is a joint programme initiative supported by the EU with the objective of developing and adopting innovative and integrated solutions for improving the efficiency, safety, security and sustainability of water provision and food systems in the Mediterranean area. Today's event aims at engaging stakeholders to open channels of information exchange and raising awareness about PRIMA.
"We believe that international cooperation in science and innovation – one of the strategic objectives of the EU – is essential in the quest for better science, better application of knowledge, and better socio-economic conditions for humanity," said Ambassador Ivan Surkos.
Mr. Surkos highlighted the strong cooperation between researchers from the Mediterranean region over the past years, stating that the EU framework programmes have been instrumental in pushing forward collaborative work in research and innovation.
He referred to the EU programme, Horizon 2020 (H2020) launched in 2014, which is the largest and most open research and innovation programme in the world. "Currently, under H2020, more than 100 entities from South Mediterranean partner countries, including Egypt, are involved in ongoing research and innovation projects."
PRIMA was initiated by nine EU member states. Today, 15 countries, including Egypt, have agreed to jointly undertake this initiative. PRIMA is major programme with an expected budget of close to EUR 400 million committed by participating countries and the EU.