"Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati, along with the European Commission and the European Parliament, held yesterday, at the Dramatic Theatre, the Conference "HORIZON EUROPE - Funding opportunities for Romanian researchers and enterprises", attended by researchers from Galati and partner universities, representatives of research institutes, local and regional businessmen, officials, members of the Parliament and of the Romanian government.

At the opening of the Conference, after a welcome speech given by Rector Puiu Lucian Georgescu, the following people spoke: Member of the European Parliament and Rapporteur for the Horizon Europe Programme Dan Nica, and Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth.

"DJUG is in the process of identifying and proposing projects with different funding sources.  Of course, the Horizon Europe Programme is our target, although getting into the system is quite cumbersome. At the University we have raised almost €2 million through the Horizon Europe framework project, which is a very good start for the higher education institution. On this occasion, we appreciate the fact that the widenning system has been created, which facilitates the access of universities from 13 countries in Central and Eastern Europe, including Romania, to these programmes with very high professional and scientific requirements", said Prof. Dr. Eng. Lucian Puiu Georgescu, Rector of "Dunarea de Jos" University of Galati.

"Research is as important in Galati, 10 km from the border with Ukraine, in the east of the European Union, as it is in Brussels. The project is a big step forward for the 13 countries with fewer opportunities to do top research: when you partner with the best, it can only be to your benefit! This is Commissioner Mariya Gabriel's first visit to Romania, I am proud that she chose us, that she agreed to talk to the top researchers in Galati, it is an important signal for Romania", said MEP Dan Nica, Rapporteur for Horizon Europe.

"It is an honor to be here today, because through this Conference we are sending a strong message: that we can build a united Europe with the help of this universal language: top research. The programme aims to develop solutions for a healthier standard of living, to accommodate digital transformations that are absolutely necessary in the 21st century and to fight climate change for our collective good. It is important to increase the contribution to research of those <<widening countries>>, and the fact that the budget for the 13 countries has tripled is thanks to the Galician MEP Dan Nica and his colleagues in the European Parliament who supported him", explained Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth.

In the second part of the Conference, Massimiliano Esposito, Head of the European Commission's Research and Innovation Department, Adrian Curaj, Director of UEFISCDI Romania, Sebastian-Ioan Burduja, Minister of Research, Innovation and Digitisation, Florin Marian Spătaru, Minister of Economy, presented the Programme and answered questions.

Horizon Europe is the EU's main funding programme for research and innovation and one of the largest research and innovation programmes in the world, with a budget of €95.5 billion. The programme facilitates collaboration and strengthens the impact of research and innovation on the development, support, and implementation of EU policies, considering global challenges, creates jobs, attracts EU talent at all levels, stimulates economic growth, promotes industrial competitiveness and optimizes the impact of investment in a strengthened European Research Area.