The strength of East Netherlands in the circular transition lies explicitly in 'doing'. We have a strong and versatile business community that works closely with internationally recognised knowledge institutions in the region. This results in innovation and valorisation. It also means that our manufacturing industry is already looking forward and growing towards an economy based on circularity in raw materials and end products. These matters require a long-term approach and patience.
The East Netherlands Innovation Agenda
The East Netherlands has a strong and versatile business community that works closely with internationally recognised knowledge institutions in the region. This has led to a highly innovative manufacturing industry, a progressive international plastics export sector, a nationally recognised construction sector and the foundation for a circular textile sector. To accelerate the transition from waste to recycling and work towards a circular economy, we have drawn up a strategic innovation investment agenda. This agenda shows how we in the East Netherlands are working towards an economy without waste. We focus on the themes: transition of the smart (manufacturing) industry, circular polymers, circular textiles and construction & infrastructure.
The transition of the manufacturing industry affects a number of aspects. We see that many companies are still insufficiently aware of the necessity of the circular transition. This may be awareness of the use of conflict materials (slavery), (political) scarcity of raw materials, CO2 pricing or taxing. Companies also seek insight into the opportunities that circular business offers them. Furthermore, companies themselves and in cooperation with their chain partners need help in the transition. This applies both to the application of other business models and to other production processes. Finally, the buildings in which production takes place offer circular opportunities.
This requires large investments, with many uncertainties. For example, what is the right moment to invest in a new technology? The availability of extra funds for these investments helps companies to take action more quickly.