India-Sweden cooperation will help achieve fossil fuel free economy goal: Jitendra Singh

India-Sweden cooperation in the energy sector will go a long way in achieving the goal of fossil fuel free economy, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said on Tuesday and underlined that India is looking for technology solutions for clean energy.

Delivering the inaugural address at the 8th India-Sweden Innovation Day meet on the theme ‘Accelerating India Sweden Green Transition’, he also said a new joint call on circular economy, including health science and waste to wealth, was made by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and the Swedish Vinnova during 2021-2022.

Singh said that cooperation in the energy sector was identified as an important area during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Stockholm in April 2018 as India is looking for technology solutions for clean energy.

He noted that the DST and the Swedish Energy Agency have worked out and launched a call for industrial research and development proposals in this sector, and received 20 joint industry led proposals, which are in an advanced stage of consideration.

“We may implement shortlisted projects soon,” the minister of state (independent charge) of the ministry of science and technology and earth sciences said.

Singh said that following the visit of Prime Minister Modi, the scientific cooperation was reviewed at the official level by a joint committee.

It identified several important themes for science and technology cooperation such as smart cities, clean technologies, digitalisation, including ‘Internet of Things’, machine learning, circular economy, Singh said.

The DST and the Swedish Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation are implementing these, he said.

The joint call was made by the prime ministers of both countries during their bilateral meeting on March 5, 2021, which resulted in 22 projects and three joint projects being recommended from both sides for funding, the minister said.

Singh said a new joint call on circular economy, including health science and waste to wealth, was made by the DST, the DBT and Swedish Vinnova during 2021-2022.

He said the Indian Council of Medical Research and the Swedish FORTE have also agreed to launch the new call in 2021-2022 on broad themes like public health, prevention, and health promotion and provision of care for the elderly.

In addition, the DBT is already engaged with Swedish partners on incubator connect, digital health care and global bio India programmes, enhancing the partnerships in the field of biotechnology.

In his address, Ibrahim Baylan, Swedish Minister for Business, Industry and Innovation, said that Indo-Swedish cooperation continued even during the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said that the number of scientific collaborations has increased since 2018 and called for finding new solutions, new resilience for developing a sustainable society. Baylan said Sweden is working hard on becoming a fossil fuel free economy and developing new climate neutral technology products.


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