“It will connect Indian, and Russian Science & Technology (S&T) led SMEs and Start-ups for joint R&D for technology development and for cross-country technology adaptation,” the statement said.
The programme will run through two annual cycles with up to five projects to be funded under each cycle.
Projects are being sought on leading S&T focus areas, including but not limited to, IT & ICT, medicine and pharmaceuticals, renewable energy, aerospace, alternative technologies, environment, new materials, biotechnologies, robotics, and drones.
On behalf of DST, FICCI will implement the programme in India, the statement said.
“Over a period of two years, the Department of Science and Technology will fund up to Rs 15 crores to 10 Indian SMEs/start-ups and FASIE will provide similar funding to the Russian projects,” the statement added.
The programme will provide access to partial public funding for jointly selected projects with the participation of at least one start-up/SME from India and one SME from Russia.
The selected projects will be required to bear partial funding as well, either through own funds or alternate sources of funding. In addition to the financial support, the teams will also be supported through capacity building, mentorship and business development.
Speaking at the launch of the programme on Thursday, Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, said India and Russia have a long-standing bilateral scientific cooperation.
“The launch of the India-Russia Joint Technology Assessment and Accelerated Commercialisation Programme is another step towards strengthening the Science, Technology and Innovation ties between the two countries. This initiative is very timely, wherein we can leverage joint intellectual and financial resources to develop technologies that would provide the solutions for tomorrow,” he said.
D B Venkatesh Varma, Indian Ambassador to the Russian Federation, said India has one of the largest start-up ecosystems in the world, and the number of unicorns is a testament to the tremendous talent the country possesses.
“S&T-led innovation and entrepreneurship are priorities of both countries and will be a key point on the agenda as President Putin visits India later this year. There is a history of scientific cooperation between the countries, and with this initiative; we take the next step of commercialisation,” Varma said.
Sergey Polyakov, General Director, FASIE, said he was well aware of the knowledge and expertise of India in the larger science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems.
“We hope the innovations and technologies supported through this programme will help us face and overcome the challenges in this new normal,” Polyakov said.
Dilip Chenoy, Secretary-General, FICCI, said the launch of the India-Russia Joint Technology Assessment and Accelerated Commercialisation Programme is a testimony to the commitments of both the countries to further strengthen the S&T cooperation.