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Kenya to spend U.S. 30 million dollars  to re-
vitalize scientific research and innovations

NAIROBI  (Xinhua) -- Kenya said on Tuesday that it has set aside 30 million U.S. dollars in the next financial year to support cutting-edge research and innovations, officials said on Tuesday.

Cabinet Secretary for Education Amina Mohamed said the new funding will stimulate research and innovations in agriculture, health, manufacturing, housing and environmental conservation.

“We have taken steps to strengthen research and development which comprise the bedrock of innovation. The new funding will therefore promote research in areas that have greatest impact to the economy and people’s livelihoods,” Mohamed said.

She spoke in Nairobi during the ongoing seventh edition of National Science Week whose theme is harnessing research, science, technology and innovations to achieve President Uhuru Kenyatta’s big four agenda on food security, affordable housing, manufacturing and universal health care.

Mohamed said the government will soon earmark 2 percent of its GDP to support research and innovations in line with a target set out by other African Union member states.

She noted that Kenya has domesticated global best practices to become a regional hub in scientific discoveries and innovations whose ripple effects are being felt across strategic sectors of the economy.

“The government has taken measures to create the necessary ecosystem, infrastructure and policy environment to support innovation, science and technology,” said Mohamed.

She added that Kenya’s quest to become a manufacturing hub hinges on harnessing innovations that are being pioneered by the country’s youth.

Kenya has explored innovative partnerships to promote research funding in diverse areas like advanced manufacturing, agro-processing, renewable energy and healthcare delivery.

Japhet Ntiba, the Principal Secretary in the state department of university and research, said that enactment of friendly policies coupled with investments from the public and private sectors have unleashed cutting-edge innovations to solve societal challenges.

“The government will continue to engage all stakeholders to harness the country’s innovation potential for the realization of vision 2030 goals,” said Ntiba.

Jemimah Onsare, the Acting CEO of National Research Fund (NRF), said that increased budgetary allocation towards research and innovations will incentivize young Kenyans to provide solution to poverty and unemployment.


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