Scientific and technological advance outlined as EU objectives in Constitution

June 22, 2004

Brussels, 21 June 2004

EU Research Commissioner Philippe Busquin is 'happy and satisfied' with the references to research in the new EU Constitution, according to a spokesperson.

Not only does the document's annex on research make reference to achieving a European Research Area (ERA) and researcher mobility, but the four-line paragraph on the objectives of the EU also refers explicitly to scientific and technological advance.

The references to research give EU research policy a new and more solid base, the spokesperson told CORDIS News. '[The Constitution] does not simply make research a tool for the competitiveness of the EU by promoting applied research, but broadens the Commission's competence, making research a shared competence,' said the spokesperson.

'The Union's action shall aim to strengthen its scientific and technological bases, by achieving a European research area in which researchers, scientific knowledge and technology circulate freely, and encourage it to become more competitive, including in its industry, while promoting all the research activities deemed necessary by virtue of other Chapters of the Constitution,' states the document, accepted by the EU's Heads of State and Government late on 19 June.

An addition, the original text also makes it clear that EU research activities 'will pay due respect to the fundamental orientations and choices of the research polices of the Member States.' A separate annex also guarantees animal welfare in the context of formulating and implementing research policies.

The document sets the legal basis for the EU's framework programmes for research and, as a complement, the measures necessary for the implementation of the ERA. To see the draft constitutions and the amendments agreed on 18 June respectively, please visit: http:/// http:///

CORDIS RTD-NEWS / © European Communities
Item source: EN_RCN_ID:22208

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