The current juncture period finds humanity and the global economy facing a multitude of challenges that the pandemic "brought" with it, calling on everyone to look to the next day and find innovative solutions to mitigate the effects. In this context, the role of Research and Innovation (R&D) and its consolidation as the basis of a new model of economic growth is considered a catalyst, as it is a "key" for a sustainable economy, but also for maintaining the international competitiveness of Cyprus. In this regard, the extroversion of domestic companies is considered more necessary than ever.
Aiming at the practical support of the business ecosystem, the Research and Innovation Foundation provides specialized guidance to interested companies, as well as the tools to support their development activities and gain access to promising overseas markets. More specifically, the Foundation, as a coordinator of the Enterprise Europe Network Cyprus (EEN-Cy) and in cooperation with the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and the European Cyprus Office, provides free consulting services to Cypriot companies for issues relating to access to finance, legal framework, internationalization and partnering, technology transfer and innovation, as well as intellectual property issues. Cyprus' participation in the Enterprise Europe Network (EEN), the largest network for the provision of support services to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the world, should be considered as one of the most important weapons in the quiver of the domestic business community.
Offering liaison opportunities through its 600 member organizations, and with a presence in Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the United States, EEN seeks, inter alia, to increase the competitiveness of domestic businesses through innovation and expanding their presence in international markets. Network members include Chambers of Commerce and Industry, research, innovation and entrepreneurship support centers as well as research and technology centers, which employ more than 3,000 experienced and specialized executives, who combine international experience with local market knowledge. market, in several areas.
Through ENN-Cy, companies are given the opportunity to promote the know-how and technologies they have developed as well as their innovative products in the market. They also can look for technologies or innovative solutions and find partners to jointly participate in research projects. It is worth noting that the services are specially designed for small and medium-sized enterprises, regardless of their field of economic activity, while helping businesses, universities and research centers to create synergies. The services of the ENN-Cy network geographically cover the entire territory of the Republic of Cyprus.
Innovation capacity management assessment services are also provided to companies familiar with innovation activities, with the aim of identifying ways in which they can evolve and optimize this process. The number of services provided in the twelve years of ENN-Cy's presence is remarkable, helping Cypriot institutions to conclude collaborations with member countries of the Network. Specifically, under the program, more than 18.000 services have been provided to domestic companies, while more than 190 Cypriot companies have entered partnerships with international organizations.
For the Research and Innovation Foundation, the strengthening of the competitiveness of the Cypriot economy and the development of cooperation and interconnection of domestic bodies with the international research and business community is an integral part of its mission. Entrepreneurial extroversion, innovative action and encouraging domestic companies to grow in the international market, entails multiple economic and social benefits. In addition to the organic improvement in the economic indicators of the companies themselves and the cultivation of a modern entrepreneurial culture in Cyprus, they contribute to the strengthening of the competitiveness of the economy and consequently, among other things, to the creation of more jobs.