Science Technology Innovation policy review ready soon 

By Albert oppong-Ansah 

Accra, Feb. 27, GNA-Ghana is finalising the review of its Science Technology and Innovation (STI) Policy, which seeks to harness the potential in the sector to drive sustainable development. 

The policy articulates the development and application of Science, Technology and Innovation in all sectors, including Agriculture, Education, Environment, Health and Energy. 

The STI review is being undertaken with the support of the Science Granting Councils Initiative in sub-Saharan Africa (SGCI), a grant support initiative. 

Dr Kwaku Afriyie, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, in a speech delivered on his behalf at the opening of the SGCI learning consolidation workshop in Accra, said the government was committed to transforming the economy from the export of raw commodities to industrialisation. 

The two-day event by the Africa Center for Technology Studies (ACTS), the implementing organization of SGCI, seeks to share knowledge and learn from beneficiary countries.  

Dr Afriyie explained that transforming the economy through STI would be an avenue to create decent jobs for the growing young and increasingly educated population. 

“Therefore, Science, Technology and Innovation have been placed at the centre of the country’s industrialisation agenda, and has become the fulcrum around, which national development revolves,” he said. 

Dr Afriyie said the government had declared the period from 2022 to 2032 as the “Decade of Innovation”, and that it was the national STI strategy through, which the country could achieve the Ghana Beyond Aid vision. 

“The goal of the Decade of Innovation is to anchor the growth of Ghana’s economy on the strategic application of Science, Technology and Innovation, and to transform the ethos of the nation into “Ghana, a Nation of Innovation”.  

The Minister said it was the target of the government to ensure that innovation accounted for the largest part of Ghana’s Gross Domestic Product, the largest increase in the number of new Ghanaian-led businesses, the highest increase in the number of well-paying jobs, and the attraction of the highest number of technology and innovation-driven multinational companies registered and operating in Ghana. 

“Ghana aims to achieve these by strengthening the country’s Innovation Eco-System, introducing robust innovation support programmes, developing nationwide infrastructure to support innovation, training our youth and equipping them with the tools for creating sustainable innovations, and establishing Ghana as the preferred destination for technology and innovation-related investments,” he said. 

Professor Tom Ogada, the Executive Director of ACTS, said Mozambique and Burkina Faso had developed their STI policy implementation plans and enhanced data management through the SGCI initiatives.  

He stated that Ghana and Zambia were finalising their STI policy review while Uganda would finalise its policy by the first quarter of 2023. 

He said Rwanda, Ethiopia, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, Malawi, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone were at different stages. 

Prof. Ogada said Africa was  home to over one billion people, and its economic, social, and political future was closely tied to its ability to leverage the power of STI.  

He said, however, major indices that defined its STI capabilities though improving, remained low compared to other parts of the world. 

 Prof. Ogada stated that no country in Africa had yet met the African Union Research and Development spending target of one per cent of Gross Domestic Product.  

SGCI is a 5-year Initiative, which aims to strengthen the capacities of Science Granting Councils (SGCs) in sub-Saharan Africa to support research and evidence-based policies that will contribute to economic and social development. 

It is funded by the United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, Canada’s International Development Research Council, South Africa’s National Research Foundation, Swedish International Development Corporation Agency, German Research Foundation and Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation. 


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