DOST Secretary sees rise in RP's R&D spending
by RG Alama
Davao City (29 September) -- The country has one of the lowest per capita spending on Research and Development with only.14% of its Gross Domestic Product (based on 2003 figures) spent on R&D.
This according to Dr. Estrella Alabastro, current Secretary of the Department of Science and Technology, which she said is very measly since it is a combined spending by the private sector and the Government.
Dr. Alabastro during a press conference of the DOST Mindanao Cluster Review held last Sept. 28 in Royal Manday Hotel, this city, said that 75% of R&D spending came from the Government with a meager 25% coming from the private sector. The DOST Secretary said that the 2008 national budget will give a hefty P1.7 billion increase on the budget of the DOST.
The budget increase will be used to increase funding on R&D and capital outlay for the Department and its agencies and institutions like the PAG-ASA (Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration), the PHILVOCS (Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology) and the Philippine Science High School.
Dr. Alabastro said that assuming the increase in DOST budget will be matched by a commensurate increase in spending on R&D by the private sector, the R&D spending is estimated to be at.30% of the country's GDP.
In its new program the Department is focusing its R&D on five specific fields namely; alternative fuels, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), environment, biotechnology and health products. (PIA XI) [top]