Nigeria, EU Collaborate To Boost Innovation, Research Projects

Nigerian flag and European union flag

Nigeria and the European Union (EU) have mapped out strategies on how to harness the potential of science, technology and innovation through research and development for mutual growth and development.

This was the focus of a high-level meeting between Nigeria led by the Minister of Innovation Science and Technology Uche Nnaji and the EU delegation led by EU Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS Samuela Isopi in Abuja on Thursday.

In his remarks, Nnaji said innovation and research are key to progress. He noted that the Ministry is committed to fostering joint research centres in areas like renewable energy and climate-smart agriculture.

He said “by leveraging the expertise and resources of our European partners, we aim to drive technological advancements and address shared regional challenges. Additionally, we are keen to collaborate on establishing innovation hubs to support startups and SMEs in fields like artificial intelligence.”

He said further that investment in scientific research and development is vital for economic growth, adding that Nigeria is committed to creating a conducive environment for such investments.

“Our ministry will focus on building capacity, enhancing research infrastructure, and fostering collaborations with European research institutions. By leveraging our strengths in renewable energy, biotechnology, and space research, we can drive significant advancements benefiting both Nigeria and the European Union.

“The Erasmus and Horizon programmes enhance educational and research exchanges between Nigeria and Europe. We are committed to increasing Nigerian participation in these programmes by streamlining the application process and providing dedicated support. This will enable more of our talents to access these valuable opportunities,” he said.

He pointed out that the upcoming EU Innovation Forum in Lagos between 8th and 9th of July is a significant milestone in the collaboration between Nigeria and EU, stressing that the forum will provide a platform for Nigerian and European innovators, entrepreneurs, and policymakers to exchange ideas and explore synergies.

Head of the EU delegation, Isopi in her remarks, noted that the bilateral agreement between EU and Nigeria in Science Technology and Innovation is a milestone. She added that the negotiation is crucial because science, technology and innovation are key to the development of key sectors such as energy, agriculture and food security.

She added that the EU is ready to support Nigeria to boost research and innovation, stressing that the EU- Nigeria innovation base that will take place in Lagos will offer opportunities for Nigerian research institutions to tap into the EU research system for mutual benefits.

Permanent secretary of the Ministry of Innovation Science and Technology, Esuabana Nko-Asanye in her remarks, appealed to the EU to provide training for Nigerian scientific and technological officers to improve their level of skill in Science, Technology and innovation which will position Nigeria in the STI landscape.


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