The Tertiary Education Trust fund (TETFund) has constituted the National Contact Point (NCP) to serve as a channel for information dissemination on opportunities, as part of its mandate on research and innovation.
Executive Secretary of TETFund, Arc Sonny Echono, disclosed this at the presentation of the Nigerian Contact Network programme for 2023-2024, in Abuja.
Worrying that Nigeria has not fully participated in the EU research funding framework until now, Echono emphasised that the process was initiated to ensure researchers from the country, effectively utilise the EU Research and Innovation framework programme, notably the Horizon Europe to foster innovation.
Echono emphasised that as an intervention agency for public tertiary institutions in Nigeria, TETFund has the mandate to facilitate the institutionalization of R and D in tertiary institutions to support development.
“TETFund is supporting research groups from various Nigerian universities through the provision of training and mentoring on writing successful grant applications, project management, partnership and consortia development to further complement and extend the support being made available by EU delegates.
“Currently, the Fund has released a request for expression of interest for Nigerian researchers and Research Teams. TETFUND will spearhead the formation of a bilateral agreement on research and innovation between Nigeria and the EU, under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Science and Technology and innovation,” he said.
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Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Monisola Udoh explained that Nigeria cannot create a knowledge-based economy without research, hence the need to collaborate.
“And we can not create good knowledge if we don’t do research and the whole purpose of this gathering is about supporting R&D for national development and am looking forward to a situation when Nigeria can trade benefits from this operation and our researchers are better empowered to do relevant research for national development.
“We need to focus on local problems that are human problems and if we are able to get the solution right here, Nigeria may become the provider of solutions that will address humanity issues globally.