Basque businesses increase their technology commitment with a 7% increase in applications for R+D subsidy programmes


The Department of Industry, Innovation, Trade and Tourism’s seven technology innovation subsidy programmes have received almost 1,800 applications from companies in response to the 2012 call. Etorgai, the scheme’s “star” programme, geared to projects leveraging the Basque economy, has received a 47% increase in applications, with private investment of 380 million euros.

Spri, 16/04/2012

Applications for the seven technology innovation subsidy programmes run by the Department of Industry, Innovation, Trade and Tourism, through SPRI (Society for Competitive Transformation), have increased by an overall 7% as compared to last year. The names of the programmes are Etorgai, Gaitek, NETs, Etortek, Saiotek, Hedatu and Emaitek, and the call has been a great success as regards the number of applications received.

The Etorgai programme received 47% more applications than last year. This is the Department’s ‘star’ programme as it involves collaboration between companies, technology centres and universities, is a long-term initiative and has a boosting effect on the Basque Country’s economy. It is geared to strategic business projects and it also has a multiplying effect, as for each euro provided by the Basque Government two euros are paid in by private enterprise.

An investment of over 42 million euros in the Etorgai programme is anticipated this year from Bernabé Unda’s Department, as compared to last year’s 32 million, benefiting 175 companies. The applications received in response to the call correspond to projects with overall investment of 380 million euros, representing a 58% increase on the total volume of the projects in comparison with 2011, when 241 million euros were invested.

In 2011 a total of 1,750 technology subsidies were approved, and this year 1,875 applications have been received. Of particular interest are the major subsidy programmes for enterprises. The Gaitek programme, geared to projects involving R+D+I activities for the development of new products, has increased its funding by 7%, and the Etorgai programme by a substantial 47%.

The programme for aid to the science and technology players forming part of the Basque Science, Technology and Innovation Network (Saiotek) has also received 9% more applications, going from 346 to 376, and the Hedatu programme for disseminating action to promote transfer of knowledge deriving from research has increased its applications from 63 to 65.

The programmes NET, supporting the creation of new technology-based companies, Emaitek, for financing technology research activity assessment work, and Etortek, which backs strategic research, have received the same number of applications as those approved in 2011.

In any case, there has been a 24% increase in investment in projects eligible for subsidy in the case of the Etortek programme, going from 130 to 161 million euros.


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