President Muhammadu Buhari says the Federal Government will dedicate 0.5% of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product to Research & Development to fast track meaningful development in the country.
Buhari, represented by his Chief of Staff, Ibrahim Gambari, said this in Abuja yesterday at the opening ceremony of this year’s Science, Technology and Innovation (STI).
“Recall that in my speech at the 5th edition of the Science, Technology and Innovation Expo 2021, I said that ‘in tandem with the decision made by the African Union Executive Council in 2006 to establish a target for all member states of 1% of GDP investment in Research and Development (R&D) in order to improve innovation, productivity and economic growth, at this juncture, we want to reiterate that having come to terms with the challenges of this critical sector of the economy, we will henceforth dedicate 0.5% of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product to Research & Development in order to fast track meaningful development in the country”,
He said his administration had “made effort in actualizing this through our communication to the National Economic Council to come up with modalities in achieving this noble intention of government.
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He noted that no nation has been developed devoid of the utilization of the science, technology and innovation apparatus.
He said he had demonstrated his love and desire to diversify the economy by the application of Science, Technology and Innovation by improving the budgetary allocation of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation.
Buhari congratulated the winners of this year’s 774 Young Nigerian Scientists Presidential Award (774-YONSPA).
He commended their creativity and competitive spirit towards academic pursuit to become future scientists, engineers and technologists to better the lots of the nation.
“I’m pleased to announce that the candidates who emerged first, second and third respectively in the final examination of the recently concluded 774 Young Nigerian Scientists Presidential Award Competition have all been granted full scholarship up to Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) level in any science-related discipline of their choice in any of our universities.
“It has been the practice of my administration as we do award scholarship since the maiden edition of the Science, Technology and Innovation Expo in 2017, to the three best students”, he said.
In his welcome address, the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Olorunnimbe Mamora, said countries that had achieved sustainable economic development owed their success to significant investments in STI.