Clust-ER Health at Bio Japan 2023 to promote research and innovation of the Emilia-Romagna region

A new edition of Bio Japan has concluded, the international fair that every year attracts companies from all over the world to explore business and collaboration opportunities in the pharma, biotech and regenerative medicine sectors. After its participation in 2019, Clust-ER returned to meet local actors, with a presence within the spaces organized by ICE – Italian Trade Agency together with eight other companies and our partner IRST – Istituto Romagnolo per lo Studio dei tumori “Dino Amadori”.

Three intense days, preceded by another important event held in Osaka on 10 October in which Clust-ER Health was invited to participate at Bio USA and of which it was a supporter. The EU-Japan Biotech and Pharma Partnering Conference saw the participation of a delegation of European clusters and companies, who brought their innovation projects to the attention of the Japanese market, with the aim of establishing contacts for scientific collaborations and opportunities of investment.

On this occasion we had the opportunity to meet, in bilateral meetings and during networking moments, some organisations which, like our cluster, promote innovation and research of public and private actors in Japan, both in the Osaka area and in other areas of the country. In view of the institutional mission that the Emilia-Romagna Region is organising, and with the aim of establishing functional connections for our members, communication channels have been created to encourage a better exchange of information and opportunities for mutual visits.

Relationships with Japan and its ecosystems, both for the Emilia-Romagna Region and the Clust-ER Health itself, have long been a fundamental asset in internationalisation activities. Much interest has been shown towards the Clust-ER as a reference player and entry point into the Italian market, both on a commercial level and, above all, for the search for scientific collaborations with corporate entities and academic institutions. The organisational and geographical dimension of the prefectures makes it easy to understand how the Italian regions also interface and a possibility of concrete collaboration emerges on a comparable scale of reference.

During the four days, in addition to the numerous meetings held and requests for information, contacts were created with local entities operating in the fields of cancer research, pharma and medtech, with the possibility of creating – in view of Expo Osaka 2025 – new virtuous collaborations and an intensification of existing relationships.

The Kawasaki Institute of Industrial Promotion, for example, brings together numerous companies in the life science, medtech and pharma sectors and plays an important role in Japan’s growth strategy by contributing to solutions to a variety of issues including health, medicine, welfare and the environment, creating global businesses in these fields.

The connection with the National Cancer Center Japan, already activated in the past thanks to the presence of IRST in previous editions, is important. It will make a visit by the Health representatives for the regional delegation possible , in order to strengthen the relationship and encourage the possibility of more structured collaborations.

The Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe, which we also had the opportunity to meet in Osaka, includes several institutes that deal with research and innovation on the topics of medtech, translational research and regenerative medicine, representing one of the most interesting actors in terms of opportunities and networks.

The dissemination made regarding the projects that our members are developing in the region on pharma, biotech, medtech and regenerative medicine topics has aroused a lot of interest from both companies and institutions and has allowed us to confirm the high regard that Japan has for the quality that the research carried out in the region possesses. It was also an excellent opportunity to talk about the BIOMATDB project and the ongoing activities on the construction of the advanced database for biomaterials: the strong interest in regenerative medicine present at the fair, in fact, made it possible to establish a fruitful dialogue with both local actors and visitors from other nations who operate in this field at a research and commercial level.

We had the pleasure of meeting the Italian Ambassador Gianluigi Benedetti, who informed us of the upcoming General Assembly of the Italy-Japan Business Group, an event dedicated to Italian and Japanese companies scheduled in Tokyo from 6 to 8 November. It is an associative body created by the Italian and Japanese business communities, with the patronage of the respective Ministries of Economic Development (MiSE and METI), to promote greater industrial cooperation between the two countries and encourage a permanent dialogue between the two business communities, with the support of the respective institutions.

Every year, alternately in Italy and Japan, the IJBG organizes its General Assembly, whici is attended by Italian and Japanese Members but is also open to all companies interested in the relations between the two countries.

The Clust-ERs are financed by the European Funds of the Emilia-Romagna Region - ERDF ROP 2014-2020