Jerudong, Brunei Darussalam, 30th November 2012 – The 64th Meeting of the ASEAN Committee on Science and Technology (COST) commenced this morning at the Empire Hotel and Country Clubafter a brief opening ceremony attended by ASEAN delegates and members of the diplomatic corps.Brunei’s Minister of Development (MOD),H.E.Pehin Orang Kaya Indera Pahlawan Dato’ Seri Setia Awang Haji Suyoi bin Haji Othman officiated the opening ceremony which also highlighted the handing over of COST chairmanship from Vietnam to Brunei Darussalam.
Delegates from all 10 ASEAN member states comprising senior officials, scientists and academicians are attending themeeting. The Malaysian delegation is led by YBhg. Dato’ Dr. Madinah Mohamad, Secretary General of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation and Malaysia’s National COST Chair.
This morning the meeting discussed matters relating to the progress of the ASEAN Plan of Action on Science and Technology (APAST) 2012-2015.The meeting also focussed on issues relating to the realisation of an ASEAN community by the year 2015. Special emphasis was also given to finalisinga three-thrust recommendation on the implementation the Krabi Initiative (KI) after 2015,which will be presented at the 7th Informal ASEAN Ministers Meeting on S&Tto be held on 2nd December 2012 for the ministers’ endorsement.
The Krabi Initiative was drawn up by Science and Technology policy experts in 2010 at a special workshop and it was adopted and endorsed by COST and ASEAN Science and Technology Ministers in the same year.The Initiative incorporates transformational initiatives and strategies to further strengthen the implementation of S&T activities in the ASEAN region. ASEAN COST agreed to pursue KI with the theme “Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for a Competitive, Sustainable and Inclusive ASEAN” with eight thematic tracks that reflect the global challenges to the region. The eight thematic tracks are ASEAN Innovation for Global Market, Digital Economy, New Media and Social Networking, Green Technology, Food Security, Energy Security, Water Management, Biodiversity for Health and Wealth as well as Science and Innovation for life.
Earlier, atwo-day KrabiInitiative Workshop and two Advisory Body meetings i.e. Advisory Body on the ASEAN Plan of Action on S&T and the Advisory Body on the Science Fund, were held back-to-back with the COST meeting. Participants discussed the implementation of KI after 2015, together with identifying and drafting a coherent implementation plan of possible activities that addresses the thematic tracks of KI and APAST flagship. The workshop also discussed at length the mechanisms for financial resources mobilisation through the identification of possible donor countries besides leveraging with dialogue partners and international organisations.