Chief Scientist: Nanotech and biotech will get priority

The decision was influenced in part by Serono's decision to close InterPharm Laboratories.

Biotechnology and nanotechnology projects will get grants for half their costs, while R&D projects in other fields will get grants for 20-50% of their costs. The proportion of a grant will depend on its worthwhileness for the economy and risk.

Sources inform “Globes” that a research committee headed by Chief Scientist Dr. Eli Opper recently decided on the higher level of support, following an earlier decision in late 2004 to give preference to biotechnology and nanotechnology. The decision was influenced in part by Swiss pharmaceutical company Serono's (NYSE:SRA; SWX:SEO) decision to close InterPharm Laboratories, and because of the difficulty of persuading foreign biotechnology companies have in raising capital to set up R&D development centers in Israel.

In addition to a grant for half of an approved plan, projects eligible for increased support will get other benefits, including approval of plans for two years (compared with one year for other R&D projects), subject to meeting certain milestones set by the research committee. Biotechnology and nanotechnology projects will also receive 66% depreciation in the first year of a plan on new equipment costing over NIS 100,000 that is essential for developing the proposed new technology.

In fields classified as national priority, a 20% gap will be kept in the level of support granted for work in Israel, compared with overseas.

Opper told "Globes", "I hope that the committee's decision and other actions will help Israel stay in the race. We concluded that there is room to give priority to the most innovative fields, due to their high risk, and lack of resources. This is precisely the situation that justifies special government internvention."

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on March 24, 2005

View comments in rows
Update by email about comments talkback
Your name
Please insert your name
Hyperlink in a new window Hyperlink Right Left underline italic bold Bulleted List Ordered List Face1 Face2 Face3 Face4 Face5 Face6
Your comment

You comment was recieved and soon will be published.
In posting comments, I agree to abide by the Terms of Use
Globes encourages lively and frank debate, but posts that the editors consider merely abusive or otherwise inappropriate will be removed. Report inappropriate content
Thank you for posting your comment, which will be reviewed for publication.
Loading Comments...load
Load more comments
Twitter Facebook Linkedin RSS Newsletters גלובס MAD Conference 2017