Nanotechnology-enabled products will be worth in excess of US$1 trillion by 2010, the Minister for Trade and Commerce Michael Ahern TD told the World Nano-Economic Conference being held in Dublin.
Minister Ahern told researchers, industrialists and investors from around the world that it is vital that they share their knowledge and experiences in the commercialisation of nanotechnology and argued that the technology will have a significant impact on sustaining economic prosperity.
He told the congress: “The US National Science Foundation has estimated nanotechnology-enabled products will be worth in excess of US$1 trillion by 2010. Clearly nanotechnology will have a significant impact on many sectors in the coming decades, including those that are central to sustaining Ireland’s economic prosperity. For a small, export-orientated nation such as Ireland it is clear that we must focus on areas in that we can excel.
“Our investments in university-based research is already bearing fruit in the form of new start-up companies producing high value-added products, built around in-depth knowledge of nanotechnology.
“While governments and policy makers can create the environment for the successful commercialisation of nanotechnology, it is only companies that can realise the market opportunities and build competitive advantage,” Minister Ahern added.
Feargal Ó’Móráin, executive director, Enterprise Ireland said there is a diverse marketplace available for commercial applications linked to nanotechnology including the electronics, medical devices, pharmaceutical, plastics and food sectors.
“As a market with tremendous potential, it is vitally important that we continue to build and exploit the intellectual property being developed through our third-level colleges,” Ó’Móráin said.
By John Kennedy