Government intends to increase spending on development of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI), the president, Nana Akufo-Addo has said.
The move is to make Ghana’s economy dynamic, sustainable, self-reliant and globally competitive. It is a known fact that Ghana’s development could only be fast-tracked when the use of science and technology were prioritized, and thus the need to ensure science, technology and innovation drove all sectors of the economy.
The President made this known when he addressed the national conference on Bridging the Technology Gap, at Peduase in the Eastern Region.
The conference brought together scientist, engineers, technocrats, and people from the academia, both locally and from the diaspora which seeks to kick-start the process of bridging the technology gap to enhance the mainstreaming of Science and Technology into Ghana’s economic and social preoccupations.
It was under the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI) in collaboration with the Ghana Institution of Engineering (GhIE), and the Mastercard Foundation.
The president said countries that have transitioned from under-development to development did so through the application of Science and technology, adding, his administration was going to increase funding for Research and Development on Science Technology and Innovation.
“I have pledged that a minimum one percent of Ghana’s GDP will be applied towards research and development in the short to medium term, to be increased to 2.5 per cent in the long term,” he noted.
To achieve the set target, sectoral policies, programmes and strategies are being implemented on the basis of the overall National Science, Technology and Innovation Policy.
To ensure the continuity of the implementation of policy on STI, President Akufo noted that the framework for the STI programme ought to be backed by legislation, stressing that the legislation was being drafted for an STI Bill to be approved by Parliament to facilitate the implementation of the STI Policy.
Government is building partnership with public research institutions, scientific academic community and industry to deepen the set objectives, further indicating that the impending establishment of the Ghana Innovation and Research Commercialization Centre (GIRC-Centre) would serve as the bridge between the Government, public research institutions, academia and industry.
The GIRC-Centre would also provide incubation centres with basic facilities that Ghanaian innovators would need and add a further perspective to the work being undertaken by the National Entrepreneurship and Innovations Plan.