Part V of the COSTECH enabling Act provides for the establishment of the National Fund for the Advancement of Science and Technology (NFAST). The Act stipulates that, the Fund shall be managed and administered by the Commission for the purposes of:-
- Financing, by way of loan or grant any research or study carried out by or for the benefit of persons or organizations engaged in research in matters related to the development of science and technology.
- Financing by way of loan or grant, the training of citizens of the United Republic by or for the benefit of organizations engaged in research in the development of science and technology.
- Making an award or awards to a person or body of persons qualifying.
- Providing support for scientific research and technology development and the application of the results in compliance with the national priorities determined by the Government upon the advice by the Commission.
- Commissioning the carrying out of research and development by an individual, group of individuals, institutions or groups of institutions.
Research activities in the country have benefited from this Fund in many ways including provision of grants to scientists to conduct research; financial support for conducting scientific meetings, workshops and seminars; funds for publishing and disseminating scientific and technological information among others.
Since the Fund was established, a total of Tshs. 528,154,660/= has been disbursed to a wide range of S&T activities in the country as summarized in Table 2 out of which 0.7% was spent for administration of the Fund. Appendix —- is a list of projects and beneficiaries of the Fund by sector since its establishment up to June 2003.
The Tanzanian S&T Policy (1986) stipulated the using of about 3.5% of the GDP for the advancement of S&T in the country. Realizing that spending 3.5% of the GDP had been impractical since the policy was promulgated, the reviewed version, Tanzania S&T Policy (1995) revised the recommendation to be at least 1% of the GDP. To date (2003), expenditure is still below 0.2% of GDP.
While it was recommended to launch the Fund with an initial amount of Tshs. 1 billion (approximately USD 1.9 million in 1995) and an annual budget not less than that amount, the Fund was launched with an initial amount of Tshs. 63.4M being a contribution from DANIDA (Tshs. 47.64M); Ministry of Science, Technology and Higher Education (Tshs. 8M); Hon. Dr. Salmin Amour, then President of Zanzibar (Tshs. 5M) and Charity walk (Tshs. 2.76M).
To see list of COSTECH Funded Projects from the year 2012 to 2015 please click here
To see NFAST Funded Research Projects for the year 2012 – 2015 Please click here
To see COSTECH Grants Manual, Please click Here