June 24, 2015, President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete has officially launched the fourth Annual National Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Conference at the Nyerere International Conference Centre in Dar es Salaam.
A three day Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Conference is an annual conference which brings together researchers, academicians, innovators, entrepreneurs, inventors from the public, private sectors and policy/decision makers from various disciplines to share experiences and deliberate how science, technology and innovation can contribute to facilitating the attainment of Tanzania’s National Development Vision 2025.
Delivering his speech during that Conference which also involved exhibitions from local scientists and innovators, President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete said that the STI Conference theme this year of ‘Fostering Innovations for Sustainable Development and Industrial Growth’ intends to provide linkages between science and industry, creating new strategies to improve livelihoods while ensuring sustainable use of resources.
“You cannot transform the economy without industries. Vibrant industries depend on high investment of Science, Technology and Innovation.”President Kikwete observed adding that the Government has tried its level best to create favorable environment for Science, Technology and Innovation development.
President Kikwete noted that his Government has maximized the Fund located for Research from 135 Million to 10 Billion. “It is very challenging for a poor country like Tanzania to locate even a One percent of its Budget in conducting Research. We have many priorities but our Government has seen the significance of Research that is why it has improved it from time to time.”He noted.
The President also promised that he would advise the coming Government to continue supporting Science, Technology and Innovation because all Tanzanians have the same vision of being a middle country economy in 2020 with mushrooming of industries.“My Government managed to locate its little fund to COSTECH to support Research projects, research infrastructures and sponsor Masters and PhD science students. Currently we have about 517 Students benefited from that program” President Kikwete said.
He also said the Government has done much to invest in Research infrastructures.”We have managed to build many secondary schools which soon are going to bring new young scientists. We also have new laboratories built under our new programs to bring in many scientists.”he said reminding that his government also has extended the Fibre optic technology reducing Call rates and internet charges, a good environment for ICT investment.
Earlier the Minister for Communication, Science and Technology Prof Makame Mbarawa said his Ministry through COSTECH had been organizing the STI Conference for years in order for researchers, academicians, innovators, entrepreneurs and inventors to meet and share different challenges affecting their society.
President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete impresed by Mr Geofrey Magila who has developed different ICT Solutions from the Dar Teknohama Business Incubator(DTBI) supervised by COSTECH.Looking on are COSTECH Board Chairperson Colonel (Rtd.) Joseph Leon Simbakalia, COSTECH Director General Dr Hassan Mshinda and Prof Makame Mbarawa.
“Science, Technology and Innovation always are there so bring solutions to problems in our society. We started this Conference in 2006, 2007 and 2008,today this is the Fourth STI Conference. We are very optimistic that at the end of this Conference, We are going to come up with tangible suggestions and recommendations for the decision and policy makers “He said.
For his part COSTECH Director General Dr. Hassan Mshinda listed different achievement of his commission in coordinating and supporting Research projects.“We have so far supported about 56 Research projects and we can stand majestically affirming that all the Research projects have given promising results.”Dr Mshinda said referring to the new poultry vaccine against fowlpox, known as Thermostable fowlpox vaccine discovered by Prof Prof Philemon Wambura from SUA.