On 6-7 October, the Polish city of Lodz received the IV European Bioeconomy Congress, organised by the Marshal’s Office of the Lodzkie Region.
This Congress discussed innovative, effective and competitive approach to activities intended to support the development of bioeconomy, with an active participation of around 600 experts, EU officials, scientists, representatives of business and local governments. The current strategies and initiatives that enable the development of bioeconomy in the European Union, as well as the collaboration between regions of Central and Eastern Europe were in the spotlight of the programme.
On the second day of the Congress, Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) has run a Plenary Session about 'Bio-based Industries in the Regions', with interventions of Jerzy Buzek, MEP and President of ITRE Committee in the European Parliament; John Bell, Director for Bioeconomy in the DG RTD of the European Commission; Aleksander Nawrat, Deputy Director in the National Centre for Research and Development; Stefano Bisoffi, Director of CREA in Italy; Elke Saggau, from the Federal Office for Agriculture and Food in Germany; Philippe Mengal, Executive Director of the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking. Following to this interventions, four BBI JU projects presented their best practices: HYPERBIOCOAT, TECH4EFFECT, VALCHEM and FIRST2RUN.
With regard to their involvement in activities in the area of bioeconomy, the Polish regions decided to establish a close collaboration aimed at strengthening of their potential, creating synergies, sharing experiences and achieving mutual benefits in joint actions. As a sign of this commitment, the Lodzkie Region, the Lubelskie Region, the Małopolska Region, the Mazowieckie Region, the Opole Region, the Pomeranian Region, the Wielkopolska Region, the West Pomeranian Region and the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking and Bio-Based Industry Consortium signed a Letter of Intent to create synergies and contribute to the development of bioeconomy.
These regions have placed innovation and competitiveness at the heart of their economic development policies, what is reflected in their regional Strategies. Moreover, the mentioned Regions have selected elements of bioeconomy as their smart regional specializations (RIS3) and are responsible for dissemination of a significant budget of structural and innovation funds (ESIF) oriented on innovations related to RIS3 specializations. It means that in existing areas of synergy, the considerable part of the budget may be spent on bioeconomy development. This is in line with the objectives of the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking and Bio-based Industry Consortium which aim at development of sustainable and competitive bio-based industries in Europe and, as it is defined in the Council Regulation 560/2014, and bridging the research and innovation gaps within EU by promoting synergies with the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF).