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Cyprus President announces establishment of Cyprus Institute
2005-01-28 11:03:11

Nicosia, Jan 28 (CNA) -- Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos announced today the establishment of the Cyprus Institute, that aims to become an international research and educational institute with strong scientific and technological orientation.

''Strategic goal of the government of Cyprus is to turn Cyprus into a Regional Research and Technology Centre,'' President Papadopoulos said, noting that the Cyprus Institute would enable renowned Cypriot scientists who work abroad, to return home.

The Board of Trustees of the Cyprus Research and Educational Foundation (that organises the planning of the Cyprus Institute), met today at the Presidential Palace with President Papadopoulos who chairs the Foundation.

The Board of Trustees decided to proceed gradually with the establishment of the Cyprus Institute, starting with the first Research Centre for Energy, Environment and Water Research.

''We took this decision for two reasons, firstly because the 21st century will belong to the economies of knowledge, and secondly because the competitive advantage of Cyprus is its human and especially its scientific personell'', he noted.

The Cyprus government also plans to establish together with the French government a Technological Park, to accommodate all Research Centres of the Cyprus Institute, as well as other Research Centres in cooperation with major universities.

The government of Cyprus, local and foreign institutions, as well as the European Union are expected to fund the whole project.

''We hope that there would be a lot of donors, since this investment would be one of the best investments for the future'', President Papadopoulos stressed.

Moreover the Council of Ministers decided to form a body, comprising of Cypriot scientists, to deal with matters regarding fundraising and setting of the Institute's priorities.

Professor Hubert Courien, Member of the Institute's Board of Trustees, former French Minister of Research and former President of the European Space Agency, said that it was not difficult to convince very high-ranking people in science, politics and technology in the world to participate in this ambitions programme.

''We have people coming from the Mediterranean area, Western and Eastern Europe, America and Asia. So all scientific and technical world is represented in our Institute and we get advice from very eminent people, who are leaders in their field in scientific matters or are decision-makers in their country'', he added.

On his part Professor of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and former US Undersecretary for Energy Ernest Moniz said that the first Research Centre for Energy, Environment and Water Research will provide a very good ground for scientists to come together.

He also referred to a meeting that took place in Cyprus among Israeli and Egyptian scientists on fishery issues, and added that the meeting was a very successful one.

''Cyprus provided a wonderful environment for coming together and discussing science as the basis of resolving important issues of environment, resources and conflict'', the US scientist added.

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