Lowest in Region: Pakistan Spends Just 0.29% of GDP on R&D

Pakistan is bottom in the region with just 0.29 percent of the GDP spent on Research and Development (R&D) against 0.82 percent spending by India, 0.94 percent by Turkey, 1.13 percent of GDP by Malaysia.

Interestingly, this spending of 0.29% of GDP translates into Rs. 1300 per person that Pakistani government is currently spending on R&D.

Israel stands at the top with spending 4.21 percent of its GDP, South Korea 4.15 percent, Japan 3.47 percent while USA spends 2.81 percent of GDP on R&D, revealed documents obtained from Science and Technology Ministry.

Science and Technology Ministry further criticized the successive governments while saying that this ultra-low preference of the government for R&D sector is in direct conflict with the National Science & Technology Innovation Policy 2012, wherein, it is recommended to enhance R&D expenditure to 1% of GDP till 2015 and 2% by year 2020.

Ironically, at present, R&D sector is allocated not more than 0.29% share of GDP.

The projects of the Science and Technology ministry that were approved in 2007 & planned for 24 months are still under implementation resulting in cost overruns, piling liabilities and litigation. MoST, from time to time has been raising this issue with M/o Planning, Development & Research without any success.

MoST share in National Public Sector Development Program

RnD_Funds_Pakistan

The Ministry has currently proposed 70 projects worth Rs 3.15 billion under the Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) for the next financial year (2016-17).

For the fiscal year 2015-16, MoST made a total demand of Rs 3.51 billion to cater to the need of developmental portfolio comprising of 88 projects (24 On-going, 21 newly approved, 43 unapproved). However, only Rs 1.51 billion were allocated for ongoing projects, leaving 21 approved projects in the lurch.

This lower allocation not only hindered the implementation of ongoing projects but also left many critical projects without funding.