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Government to allocate 1% of GDP to special research fund

Jan. 2, 2018, 11:59 a.m.

The Akufo-Addo administration is set to follow through with plans to allocate one percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to fund research in the short term.

This, according to Minister of Environment Science and Technology, Professor Frimpong Boateng, will come alongside the development of a Science, Technology and Innovation Fund.

Speaking at a technology exhibition of the Kristo Asafo Church in Accra, Professor Frimpong Boateng assured that the government was putting in a lot of effort to develop research in the country. He, however, noted the need for administrative structures to ensure prudent use of prospective funds.

“We have been complaining that we don’t have enough money for research and development, In Ghana, we talk a lot without thinking about the administrative financial framework and so on. So if someone is given 1 billion dollars now, we would not know how to administer it, he stated.

Thus, Professor Frimpong Boateng added that this was the reason a Science, Technology and Innovation fund was needed “so that when we get the money, we would be able to know how to administer it.”

“This policy document is before Cabinet and when this is approved, our President has promised that in the short term, we would devote one percent of GDP to that fund so that we would have money for research.”

Ghana’s GDP is currently around $45.5 billion.

Professor Frimpong Boateng had previously lamented the allocation of 0.025% of GDP to his ministry for research purposes.

According to him, more is needed in the government’s quest to address the country’s challenges through research and innovation.

In line with its support for research, the Ministry recently took receipt of a $100,000 donation from the Ghana Chamber of Mines towards empowering the next generation of researchers, problem solvers and leaders.

The support was also towards an initiative on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) training programme.