The research committee of the Office of the Chief Scientist approved 33 new research & development projects at an investment of NIS 86.8 million, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor said Tuesday. The projects will be financed partly by government sources, which will contribute NIS 40.5m. via the ministry. Three of the approved projects are in the electronics sector, four in electro-optics, two in telecommunications and four are in the software industry. Sixteen biotechnology programs were approved in the budget and five projects from other sectors were also given grants.