MIL OSI Translation. Region: Germany / Deutschland –
Source: CDU CSU
Dear President of the Bundestag, Dear Colleagues! Ladies and gentlemen! Hope is the word that people in our country currently associate with innovation and research, hope that we will get this virus and its horrors under control as soon as possible.
But even without the pandemic, which is keeping the world in suspense, we would be debating the importance of innovations, the Federal Report on Research and Innovation and also the EFI report today. Only one thing was different before: Research and innovation have seldom been linked to such concrete hopes for people and their health. Everyone is hoping for the vaccine, a vaccine that is being developed in innovative, research-based companies in Germany, among others, by companies that currently have promising vaccine candidates in the pipeline. This shows: Germany can innovate, Germany can biotechnology, and Germany can start-up.
(Applause from members of the CDU / CSU and the SPD)
But none of this, dear colleagues, is a sure-fire success. The fact that we have these success stories is the result of technology-open and intelligent research funding. This federal government relies on the power of progress and innovation. We have been investing in research and innovation for years. Good research and successful innovation need staying power. And it is precisely this foundation that makes us stronger than others in this crisis, on which we are currently building and therefore also successful. BioNTech is the best example of this.
BioNTech is a start-up. Everyone knows this company by now. This company is an old friend in our research funding. We, the BMBF, have been promoting this company since it was founded in 2007: at the beginning with GO-Bio, our biotechnology start-up initiative, then via the top cluster competition and now in the special program for vaccine development. Over the years, Özlem Türeci and Ugur Sahin and their colleagues have done research and development with perseverance. It is now paying off. It is only because we in Germany can afford this staying power even in financially difficult times that we have such success with companies like BioNTech.
(Applause from the CDU / CSU and the SPD)
I’ll give you another example of the strengths of our innovation country: Back in January – nobody had spoken of a pandemic here – scientists working with Professor Christian Drosten at the Charité developed a PCR test and were among the pioneers worldwide. This test helped us get through the first wave of the pandemic better than others – a small, quick innovation with a big impact.
But we are also at the fore in other fields of innovation. Let me give you a few examples: A German institute has just reached number one in cybersecurity in the global computer science ranking, namely CISPA in Saarbrücken, a Helmholtz institute that we founded – still young – to provide security solutions in to develop digital systems. Or our Gaussian calculator: on the recently published list of the 500 fastest supercomputers in the world, supercomputers from Germany are at the top of the list. We are also at the forefront there in the world supercomputer league.
(Applause from members of the CDU / CSU)
This is how relevant and powerful answers to societal challenges look like, dear colleagues. So let us pause for a moment and be proud of our innovation location, of what has already been achieved to this day. Let’s enjoy what we have achieved to date.
(Applause from MPs of the CDU / CSU and MP Bärbel Bas [SPD] – Katrin Göring-Eckardt [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: Rousing applause!)
Of course, what is already good today has to become even better: even more innovative, even more agile, even faster. Because the competition with Asia and America is tough and fast. But, dear colleagues from the opposition, that’s what sets us apart: We see the success stories from Saarbrücken, Mainz, Dessau, Tübingen and Berlin as an incentive to continue vigorously and to invest with patience. Yes, dear FDP, let’s talk about how we can make a good biotech location even better. I would be delighted if you would support our efforts. This also means that we talk about the legal framework for new technologies such as the gene scissors CRISPR / Cas9 without ideological blinkers; because we want to use this instrument for the benefit of the people.
(Applause from the CDU / CSU – Dr. Marco Buschmann [FDP]: Then you have to look over it, not to us! Wrong stage direction! – Dr. h. C. Thomas Sattelberger [FDP]: Look over it!)
Dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, also on the screens, strengthening resilience and becoming more technologically competent, these are the two goals for which we are upholding the maxim in this crisis and also afterwards, not only in health research. We have just decided in the cabinet to support microelectronics with 400 million euros. It’s about nothing less than the question of how we can stay competitive in the digital world and set our own standards. Microelectronics is the key technology in the digital world: sensors in self-driving cars, self-controlling industrial production, the communication infrastructure of the future: all of this needs chips and processors. We need sovereign competence in this field in order to actively shape microelectronics, and to do so as sustainably and energy-efficiently as possible.
(Applause from delegate René Röspel [SPD])
Dear colleagues, I can only repeat it one more time: global competition is tough and fast. And we want and will survive in this competition if we rely on agility and flexibility, good networks, and swift transfer from research to commercial application. With this we can keep this country at the top, and with it we can preserve and expand the prosperity of our country.
(Applause from the CDU / CSU)
We have the specialists for it. We have the innovation potential. We must continue to work on it courageously, continuously and optimistically. We can do that! We are the innovation country Germany, and we want to stay that way. For this I ask all of you for your support.
(Applause from the CDU / CSU and the SPD – Dr. Marco Buschmann [FDP]: Trick question: Name a specific measure that the minister mentioned! – Countercall from Deputy Ralph Brinkhaus [CDU / CSU]: Research funding for the next ten years for which the whole world can envy us! – Countercall from Deputy Dr. Marco Buschmann [FDP]: She said that? We can read that in the minutes! Then we can see whether you can read! – Countercall of Deputy Ralph Brinkhaus [CDU / CSU]: A bit of basic knowledge is probably required, Mr. Buschmann! My God, you are completely out of your role! Completely out of your role! – Countercall from Deputy Dr. Marco Buschmann [FDP]: There is nothing written about it on your role!)
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.