George DUCA, academician

PhD in chemistry, university professor
President of the Chemistry Society of the Republic of Moldova

Republic of Moldova
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The Republic of Moldova Joins EU Research Programme

Brussels, 11 October 2011. The European Union and Moldova have today forged closer ties on research and innovation. Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science and Gheorghe Duca, President of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Moldova, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the association of Moldova to the EU's Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7). This will allow Moldovan scientists, research institutes, universities and companies to collaborate with their counterparts across Europe in key research areas, while strengthening their own research expertise and capacity. In practice they will compete for research funding on an equal footing with counterparts in EU Member States. In return Moldova with make a contribution to the overall FP7 budget, calculated on the basis of its GDP. The Republic of Moldova will be the 14th country associated to FP7.

Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn welcomed the signature of the MoU, stating "The agreement today is only the beginning of a long-term partnership that will benefit Moldova and the rest of the European scientific community. Together we can tackle the big challenges that face our societies like better healthcare, greener transport, and energy security."

Increased sectoral cooperation with Moldova and the other countries of the Eastern Partnership and the broader European Neighbourhood Policy region, through the facilitation of their participation in EU programmes, is a key aspect of the recent communication 'A New Response to a Changing Neighbourhood' issued jointly by the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the European Commission. FP7 will be the first EU programme in which the Republic of Moldova will participate fully. The Republic of Moldova will also be the first Eastern Partnership country and the second European Neighbourhood Policy country to be associated with FP7.

Association is the strongest form of international cooperation in research and innovation between non-EU countries and the EU. The Republic of Moldova will become formally associated to FP7 from the 1 January 2012. In practical terms Moldovan researchers will be associated for all of the FP7 calls which are currently open, as these draw on the budget for the 2012 financial year. The other countries associated to FP7 are: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Faroe Islands, FYROM, Iceland, Israel, Liechtenstein, Montenegro, Norway, Serbia, Switzerland and Turkey.