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October 9th, 2009
Nanotechnology will rival oil as a global powerhouse industry, so Russia's economy needs to embrace it now to avoid a repeat of the "well-known scenario" in which growing oil prices keep it from modernizing, President Dmitry Medvedev said Tuesday.
Medvedev spoke at the opening of the International Nanotechnology Forum, where one senior official said the burden to create new innovations should fall on small and midsized businesses.
Rusnano chief Anatoly Chubais, meanwhile, gave Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov a guided tour of an exhibition of new Russian nanotechnology, including a photodiode lamp that appeared to temporarily blind Ivanov.
"The economic crisis is a great impetus for an economic renewal," Medvedev said in his speech at the Krasnaya Presnya Expocenter.
"But the main challenge," he said, "is to avoid the well-known scenario where oil prices are on the rise and the economy is improving and, again, just like in previous years, no one needs nanotechnology because we can relax and make ends meet without innovations. We therefore must make nanotechnology one of the main sectors of the economy."
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