STAFF REPORT IBD: Pakistan has called upon the Comsats countries to make meaningful investments in science and technology-led education and human resource development in order to achieve a prosperous future for their nations.
“It goes without saying that our nations prosperous future is tied to meaningful investments in science and technology-led education and human resource development,” Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani said while inaugurating the minister-level Commission meeting of the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS).
Pakistan has very much reiterated its stand that we cannot make significant progress in science and technology unless we cooperate with one another, pool our available intellectual and economic resources for collective benefits and above all give a central place to science and technology in our policy decisions backed with strong political and financial support.
“This is why South-South cooperation is indispensable for the sustainable progress of the developing world in the present century”, said the Prime Minister, who is also the Chairperson of COMSATS.
Besides other, the meeting was also attended by Minister for Science and Technology (MoST), Mir Changez Khan Jamali; Federal Secretary Science and Technology, Akhlaq Ahmad Tarar (Chairperson of COMSATS Consultative Committee); Executive Director COMSATS, Dr. Imtinan Elahi Qureshi; and the Chairperson of COMSATS Coordinating Council, Dr. Eduardo Posada Flórez (Executive Director CIF, Colombia).
Earlier, in his introductory remarks, Dr. I. E. Qureshi stressed the need for allocating sufficient resources for enhancing the scientific capacity of the developing countries and working out technology-based solutions to solve the enormous problems faced by the large populations inhabiting these countries. He hoped for the Commission meeting to effectively “deliberate upon the common issues confronting the developing countries, and to steer COMSATS for playing a strong role in addressing issues”.
Representing COMSATS Coordinating Council on the occasion, Dr. Posada said during the meeting that he advocated the need for substantial increase in the financial allocation for SandT to ensure social and economic development.
“The lack of scientific and technical capacity,” said Dr. Posada “leads to wastage of natural resources, economic stagnation, social instability, political unrest and foreign interference.” He further stated, “This meeting is a wonderful opportunity to address together the challenge of constructing roads to progress, by strengthening the bonds between our institutions for the benefit of our scientists, our countries and finally, of the planet.”
Federal Minister Jamali pointed out the commonality of the development challenges faced by the member countries of COMSATS and declared the “judicious use of science and simple technologies” is a panacea to the common problems of these countries. “It is in our collective interest to share our experiences, pool our resources – human as well as material – and actively collaborate in research to address our common problems”, he said.
The inaugural ceremony was attended by foreign delegates, including ministers nominated by the Heads of COMSATS member states/governments, high officials from government of Pakistan, and heads/representatives of international organizations, as well as officials from the Pakistani Ministry of Science and Technology and its affiliated scientific institutions, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology and COMSATS Secretariat.
Meanwhile, plenary sessions were also held in which the member countries presented their SandT development plans and renewed their support to COMSATS. A number of resolutions and recommendations of the meeting were formulated to set the course of future direction of COMSATS as an internationally acclaimed body dedicated to helping the countries of the South in their quest to build scientific capacity.
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