Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Vital to Achieve Sustainable Development Goals: Minister

Federal Minister for Science and Technology Shibli Faraz Thursday said the goal of the ministry is to ensure the implementation of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy to achieve sustainable development goals in line with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The minister made these remarks while chairing a meeting on the import of scientific equipment and raw materials. He highlighted the implementation of scientific innovation to boost development.

The minister said that the country is currently reliant on imported products and raw materials for its industrial needs which must be fixed by following the fourth industrial revolution of the West. He said that his goal is to bring together triple helix; research & development, industry, and academia to boost import substitution.

The representatives from the industry were of the view that government needs to provide protection to local manufacturing and make import substitution a priority. Energy-efficient systems are being installed in the industry to achieve clean and sustainable industrial growth.

The representatives from the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) and Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) pointed out that funding needs to be increased in the research and development sector that forms the base of every industrial revolution. Industrial mapping will be carried out to identify three to four initial testing stage projects and based on their results a comprehensive action plan will be developed. Three industrial sectors; agriculture, engineering, and electronics would be the main focus at this stage.

The minister told the stakeholders that industries will be identified in the follow-up meeting and a three to six months roadmap will be charted to proceed with the initial stage. He said that the new small and medium enterprises (SMEs) policy is a great initiative and the government will protect the infant industry. He concluded by saying that all relevant stakeholders will be made part of this process to achieve these collective goals.

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