Chairman of National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation Vice President U Myint Swe attended the first meeting of the National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation for this year at the Ministry of Education in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday afternoon.
In addressing the meeting U Myint Swe said the day’s meeting was the first one for 2019. The 28 member council was led by the Vice President was formed by notification 7/2019 dated 12 March 2019 of the Union Government to develop science, technology and innovation works which were the aims of Science, Technology and Innovation Law, expanding research works based on modern science and technologies, conducting technology distribution and technology transfer works, conducting trainings to develop experts continuously, cooperation between universities, manufacturing works and other organizations, honoring and benefiting innovators, fostering development of research that supports market economy and effectively conduct and implement science and technology fairs and competitions.
Science and technology played a main role in a country’s development. The present moment was a transition to the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0 where the manufacturing system exchanged data and information using automation systems. Science, technology and innovation works were required to be conducted in a rising momentum so that Myanmar would not be left behind.
To raise the role of science and technology, Myanmar repealed the Union of Myanmar Applied Research Institute Act 1954 and enacted Science and Technology Development Law 1994. To reflect the developing and changing time, this law was redrawn. On 25 June 2018 Science, Technology and Innovation Law was enacted over ruling the Science and Technology Development Law 1994 which was repealed.
It was everyone’s knowledge that science, technology and innovation plays a major role in implementing the goals, pillars and strategic work processes of the Myanmar Sustainable Development Plan 2018-2030. The role of the science, technology and innovation sector was included in the sustainable development of the country’s economy, implementation of Mekong region strategies, implementation of ASEAN Economic Community and government’s other pledges and undertakings. Therefore the works included in the aim of the law were required to be implemented. Only then could the country be in line within the region and internationally to achieve our aims and Sustainable Developments. The science, technology and innovation works to be implemented at the present moment were research and development works, training and teaching works, and service and manufacturing works. In addition to this technology transfer, Myanmar needed to participate in supporting and assisting works on science, technology and innovation under the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC).
There were many areas in science and technology and the council was to form subject wise committees on science, technology and innovation that were appropriate for the country’s situation and conduct science, technology and innovation works.
Under the Science, Technology and Innovation Law, the duties and responsibilities of the National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation and the committees were mainly to implement research and development works and innovation works. Therefore, the National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation was a National Research Council that represented the country.
The duties of the National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation were to systematically setup, implement, encourage, support and coordinate research and development works, produce required experts and arrange to raise their capacities, setup arrangements for cooperation among research departments, universities and other organizations, form Union Territory Nay Pyi Taw and state/region level work committees, collect and distribute news and information and prepare annual work reports.
Furthermore it would study the socio-economic requirements of the entire country, coordinate and link universities, degree colleges, research departments, industrial manufacturing works to conduct science, technology and innovation works that would cause regional development and open courses that train and produces human resources.
For development of science, technology and innovation, not only the experts but the innovation of the grass roots people was also urged to be recognized and encouraged. It was also required to setup arrangements that would increase the participation of youths in innovation and invention activities as well as create opportunities for such activities.
Emphasis must be placed towards transferring technology from innovation to manufacturing. If full technology copyrights were granted to the innovators, there would be more innovators. For this to happen all need to work toward the establishment of technology transfer rules and regulations.
To implement the aims of the Science, Technology and Innovation Law, national level policies on science, technology and innovation will be established. To setup such policies for sector wise works in the law, discussion and coordination among relevant ministerial departments are urged.
Attendees were invited to openly discuss and make suggestions about future work processes and to successfully implement the aims, duties and responsibilities of the National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation, said the Vice President.
Next, Council Vice Chairman Union Minister Dr. Myo Thein Gyi explained about the setup of the Council.
This was followed by Council Secretary Deputy Minister U Win Maw Tun who explained about the draft Science, Technology and Innovation Rule and matters on which decisions were to be made.
Afterwards members of National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation Union Minister for Industry U Khin Maung Cho, Union Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Myint Htwe, Union Minister for Planning and Finance U Soe Win, Deputy Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation U Hla Kyaw, Deputy Minister for Transport and Communications U Tha Oo, Deputy Minister for Electricity and Energy Dr. Tun Naing, Deputy Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement U Soe Aung gave suggestions and discussed sector wise cooperation programs and future works relating to science, technology and innovation works. The Vice President gave suggestions and comments to ensure coordination after which the meeting concluded following closing remarks by the Vice President.
The meeting was attended by the following persons:
The National Council for Science, Technology and Innovation Vice Chairman Union Minister for Education Dr. Myo Thein Gyi, Union Ministers U Khin Maung Cho, Dr. Myint Htwe and U Soe Win, Deputy Ministers U Hla Kyaw, U Tha Oo, Dr. Tun Naing, U Win Maw Tun and U Soe Aung, National Education Policy Commission Chairman, Permanent Secretaries, Directors-General and Managing Directors, officials from Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI), Federation of Myanmar Engineering Societies (Fed. MES), Myanmar Computer Federation (MCF), Rectors’ Committee, Myanmar Young Entrepreneurs Association (Central), Myanmar Construction Entrepreneurs Association and Renewable Energy Association Myanmar and departmental officials.— MNA