'Russian scientific potential is not being thoroughly used to bring economic advantage to the country,' says the Secretary of the Committee for Science and High Technology of the President of the Russian Federation Professor Mikhail Kovalchuk. Kovalchuk shared his opinion on Thursday at a seminar entitled 'Great Britain and Russia. Innovation is the Road of Development,' according to Rosbalt. 'Russia can not be classified as a High Technology country, rather it is a country of raw materials -approximately 40 percent of the Russian Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is provided by raw materials in spite of the fact that 12 percent of the world's scientific potential is located in Russia,' said Kovalchuk. Chief Scientific Advisor to the British Government Sir David King, also speaking at the seminar, said it was important to create conditions which would allow scientists and businessmen to positively interact. He said that the British government over the last few years has significantly increased financing of science. If in 1997 science received GBP 1.4 billion, in 2005 it will receive GBP 2.9 billion.
The seminar 'Great Britain and Russia. Innovation: The Road of Development' is occurring as apart of the Russian-British project 'Week of Sciences in St. Petersburg.' The project represents a series of planned activities in St. Petersburg with the participation of leading scientists and experts from Great Britain and Russia. 'Week of Sciences' demonstrates modern achievements and new technology of Britain. The British Council and the British Embassy organized the project. The Northwest Center for Strategic Development, the Fond for Cooperation in the Development of Small Business, Vodokanal St. Petersburg, and Lomonosov magazine are co-sponsors.
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