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New Research Fund Targets Business Development

New Zealanders will soon have access to $36 million per year for investment in research, science and technology - the New Economy Fund.

“The New Economy Fund (NERF) is another vital component in the move towards a knowledge economy,” said Steve Thompson, Chief Executive of the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology, which is administrating the fund.

“By direct investment into the basic research we are underpinning tomorrow’s enterprises. Businesses need to be aware that using this research will make them more competitive, in a economy based around knowledge and new industry.”

“The Foundation is committed to fostering knowledge so that bright ideas turn into commercial reality for business and create wealth for all New Zealanders”.

It is expected that applications for the new fund will be called for early next month, with the fund becoming fully operational in January 2000. It is hoped that at least $36 million of the NERF funds will be invested by the end of June next year.

The fund was announced earlier this year as part of the Government’s Bright Futures package. It comprises of $25 million, which will be transferred from the Public Good Science Fund, and $11 million of new money.

“The purpose of this new fund is to focus on investing in scientific research which has the commercial target of creating new industries,” said Dr Thompson.

“In investing this money the Foundation will be looking to draw on the expertise of both scientists and business people so that a close eye can be kept on emerging markets and trends.”

The Foundation also delivers the Public Good Science Fund, Technology New Zealand and a range of Scholarships.

For Further information: Patricia Donovan 04 498 7809 or 025 226 4136 Steve Thompson 04 498 7824 or 025 459 885

ENDS




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