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The Warsaw Voice » Business » April 8, 2009
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Innovation First
April 8, 2009 By W.¯.    
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Innovation is a priority for the Polish economy in the coming years, under a government strategy based on the European Commission's Innovative Economy Operational Program and the European Union's Lisbon Strategy as amended in 2005.

The government's focus on innovation is designed to help the country catch up with the world's most developed economies.

The government's Innovative economy Program, approved Oct. 30, 2007, sets aside 9.7 billion euros for innovation in 2007-2013. Of this, 8.3 billion euros will come from the European Regional Development Fund.

The program includes direct support for businesses, business environment institutions and research centers providing services to businesses. As part of the program, the government supports "product, process, marketing and organizational innovation" leading to the emergence and development of innovative businesses. Support will be provided to businesses operating in all sectors.

The main objective of the program is to develop an economy based on innovation. This goal is to be achieved by making businesses more innovative and by increasing the role of research in economic development. The government wants Polish research centers to become more competitive and innovative Polish products more prominent on the international market. The program is also designed to boost the creation of jobs and increase use of information and communication technology in the economy.

Regionally innovative projects are eligible for support from 16 Regional Operational Programs.

The Innovative Economy Program is divided into several parts, each coordinated by a different ministry. The Ministry of Regional Development manages the overall program in consultation with the Economy Ministry, Ministry of Science and Higher Education, and the Interior Ministry.

The aim of the first part of the program, Research and Development of Modern Technology, is to increase the role of scientific research in the economy by promoting research projects in areas of special importance to the country's socioeconomic development.

The second part, Research and Development Infrastructure, aims to make the Polish economy more competitive by consolidating and modernizing infrastructure in the country's best research centers.

Capital for Innovation is the third part of the program. Its objective is to increase the number of innovative businesses and improve access to external sources of funding for innovation projects.

The fourth part of the government program, Innovation Undertakings, aims to increase the level of innovation in businesses by promoting the use of modern technology.

The fifth part, Innovation Diffusion, is designed to provide businesses with high quality services and infrastructure in order to strengthen their innovation potential and enhance their competitive edge.

The goal of the sixth part of the program, The Polish Economy on the International Market, is to raise Poland's profile as an attractive economic partner and a place where investors can establish valuable business contacts.

Part seven, Information Society-Building e-Government, is intended to contribute to improving the business environment by providing individuals and business people with better access to information and public administration services.

The eighth part of the program, Information Society-Enhancing Innovation in the Economy, aims to stimulate the development of the economy by supporting e-business and removing technological, economic and psychological barriers to the use of e-services.

The last part of the program, Technical Assistance, is designed to support the process of managing, implementing and monitoring the program and ensure an effective use of funds from both EU and national sources in compliance with EU law and policies.
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