- Written by Ivan Dulgerov
Mr. Stefan Stoyanov, Deputy Mayor, Plovdiv Municipality: “Plovdiv is the biggest industrial center in Bulgaria and the right place for the PlantaSYST project”
Mr. Stoyanov, what convinced the Plovdiv Municipality to support the realization of the PlantaSYST project in Plovdiv, Bulgaria?
Plovdiv is the biggest industrial center in the country, and in the past few years, it also became a well-established R&D center. In this context, we do not doubt that Plovdiv is the right place for the PlantaSYST project.
It was evident from the beginning, when we first met the project coordinator Dr. Tsanko Gechev, that PlantaSYST could become one of the most significant scientific projects in Bulgaria. The ambition and the visionary of the scientists, gathered by Dr. Gechev with the responsibility to develop the PlantaSYST project, was impressive, so we were quickly convinced that it should be realized in Plovdiv and that we had to support it as much as we could. That is why the Municipality of Plovdiv, with the decision of the City Council, provided the land for building the new scientific campus of the CPSBB. It is an honor for us to be a small part of this scientific success and to contribute to its realization in Bulgaria.
What is the project’s significance for the economy and the development of Bulgarian plant science?
Plovdiv has more than 150 years of tradition in vegetable production and crop science. The PlantaSYST project brings Bulgarian science to a new level, upgrading the Bulgarian tradition with the international experience of researchers in plant science.
The project gives an excellent opportunity for Bulgarian researchers to work in an international team. It is the first plant systems biology and biotechnology project in Bulgaria, co-funded by the European Commission, which unites renowned scientific institutes from Bulgaria and Germany. Its potential is significant in terms of scientific breakthroughs and contributions to the development of plant science in Bulgaria and worldwide.
Moreover, the first Bulgarian Research Center of Excellence in plant science – The Center of Plant Systems Biology and Biotechnology – is already a fact with its newly built scientific campus in Plovdiv. The Center is unequaled in the scale of the building and greenhouses, technical equipment, and scientific expertise for the country and the whole region of Eastern Europe.
What do you expect from the project in the future?
We are proud of the achievements of all the partners of the PlantaSYST project, and we have high expectations for the future work of the scientific team at the CPSBB. I am sure the Center will attract many partners worldwide, developing world-class scientific projects with adequate resources and budgets.
The CPSBB will position Bulgarian science in a worthy place among the scientific achievements of all well-established research institutes worldwide. It is essential that CPSBB receive annual public funding from the Bulgarian government since it is a routine practice in Bulgaria and the EU that the centers of excellence are co-financed by the state budget.