Prime Minister Ansip reports to Parliament on research and development activities

20.12.2012 | 15:37

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Tallinn, 20 December 2012 – Appearing before Parliament today, Prime Minister Andrus Ansip said that spending on research and development in Estonia saw noteworthy growth in 2011.

“The percentage of R&D to GDP rose to 2.41 per cent,” said Ansip, citing the comparison with 2010 when spending in the field amounted to 1.63 of GDP.

He said that starting in 2002, when the first Knowledge-Based Estonia strategy was drafted, total spending on R&D has grown sevenfold.

“Never has there been greater investment into R&D in Estonia than there was in 2011,” Ansip said. “Research and development is no longer considered a luxury but an existentially important activity that deserves constant attention.”

Ansip noted that public sector investments into science and research have increased the development ambitions and opportunities in the business sector and that the share of private sector investments into research and development has seen strong year-on-year growth.

He added that considering the goal of reaching 3 per cent of GDP by 2020 in R&D spending, the contribution from the private sector should increase further and remain at a level of at least two-thirds of total spending.

“Only then can we consider ourselves comparable in terms of our relative indicators to such strong research and development cultures as Germany, Finland, Sweden or Denmark,” said Prime Minister Ansip.

Ansip noted that in addition to increasing the level of R&D spending, more attention would have to be paid to the internal outputs of the research and innovation system.

“The outcomes of our choices in research policy must be reflected in our society’s well-being and create a basis for stable economic development,” said Ansip.

Ansip stressed that research, development and innovation in Estonia must remain priorities regardless of the state of the economy, or international or domestic turmoil.

For the prime minister’s full report to Parliament, visit the Government website:


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