News in Brief, BB200605
EU Ministers Approve New Competitiveness and Innovation Programme
At the EU Competitiveness Council on 13 March, following the proposal tabled by the European Commission, EU ministers agreed the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP), which will span 2007 – 2013. The new document groups together a number of existing programmes including the Intelligent Energy Europe Programme (IEE). IEE was previously under the direct control of DG TREN, but will now move to DG Enterprise, along with the rest of CIP. It remains to be seen how this move will affect the effectiveness and focus of the IEE Programme.
The programme’s budget will depend on interinstitutional agreement on the 2007-2013 financial perspective, expected by the end of May. Ministers attempted to clarify the complementary nature and interaction of CIP and the 7th Framework Programme (FP7), and stressed that more visibility will be given to eco-innovation. The new programme will pay special attention to the role of small and medium enterprises and will group existing projects under three pillars: Entrepreneurship and Innovation; Information and Communication Technology, and IEE.