ISLAMABAD: Minister for Science and Technology Rana Tanveer on Thursday apprised the Senate that the ministry had spent Rs. 1.458 billion on Scientific and Technological Research and Development activities since 2013.
Responding to a question during the ‘question hour’, the minister said keeping in view the importance of science & technology in the knowledge economy, the government has enhanced the annual Research and Development (R&D) budget to almost Rs200 million.
He said the ministry and its R&D organisations have the mandate to fulfil the national Science & Technology (S&T) needs through R&D for developing products, technologies and processes to facilitate industry.
The Ministry’s programmes were mainly implemented by 15 R&D organisations in the areas of agriculture, biotechnology, building materials, chemical technology, environmental studies, electrical & electronics, engineering, food technology, glass & ceramics, human resource development, herbal medicines, leather, materials sciences, medical technology, minerals, metrology & standards, metallurgy, nano-technology, ocean resources, pesticides & herbicides, pharmaceuticals, quality assurance and standards, strategic chemicals, renewable energy, textiles and water sector.
He said to elevate the R&D activities, the ministry has provided latest scientific equipment to the labs in the major industrial hubs to catalyse the introduction of indigenisation.
He said that in the area of water research, efficient land and water management practices and techniques are being introduced to improve quality of life and irrigation system in the water-deficient areas and desert lands including Thar, Thal, Tando Jam, Cholistan, Kamaliya, Quetta and other areas.
He said as many as three water quality laboratories were set up in cities including Sialkot, Sahiwal and Mianwali to conduct research and monitoring of water resources.