Press Release
October 18, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara urged the government to implement a nationwide initiative on Science and Technology (S&T) innovation to spur economic growth and enhance the country's competitiveness.

Angara, Chair of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, made the call during a keynote speech at a forum launching the government-funded Survey on Innovation Activities (SIA) 2009, spearheaded by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in partnership with the Philippine Institute of Development Studies (PIDS) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

"The survey is a timely, relevant piece of input to governance and public policy pointing out that around 54 percent of the firms interviewed were innovators. Unfortunately, the study also shows that in terms of innovation, government is a very passive, indifferent actor," said Angara.

According to SIA 2009, around two-thirds of the medium and large establishments surveyed can be considered "innovation active," compared to half and one third for small and micro-establishments respectively.

Only one in 20 firms reported that they received public support for their innovations.

"There is not a single government agency that singularly pushed for innovation. This is why we perform so poorly compared to our neighbors," explained Angara, Chair of the Congressional Commission on Science, Technology and Engineering (COMSTE).

"But now we ought to wake up and demand that government must commit to implementing a national innovation program in a coordinated, single-minded and dedicated manner. There must be financial and policy support to generate a local pool of trained S&T professionals. Government should begin to incentivize innovation in the country," he stressed. (30)

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