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India-Korea Science & Technology Steering Committee Meeting

Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences co-chaired the 3rd India-Korea Science & Technology Steering Committee Meeting with Dr. Choi Yanghee, Minister for Science, ICT & Future Planning (MSIP) of the Republic of Korea at Seoul on 6th November 2015.

Both the Ministers exchanged notes on the current policy directions and national initiatives in science, technology and innovation. They led emphasis on the importance of closer bilateral cooperation through science & technology collaboration.  Dr. Harsh Vardhan pointed out that by complimenting the Indian strength in basic & fundamental research coupled with Korea’s strength in application & technology development, both countries could create a win-win situation through this partnership. He mentioned that through this convergence approach inclusive and cost effective solutions could be achieved through scientific and technological interventions.

Following the decisions taken during the summit meeting between the Prime Minister of India and President of Korea in May 2015, the two countries had launched a new programme of Industrial R&D cooperation in the areas of Cleantech, Renewable Energy, Robotics & Automation and Electronics Design & Manufacturing. The two sides agreed to support 3 joint business-led collaborative R&D projects aim to develop new Intellectual Property and Prototypes which will have potential for commercialization. This will contribute national initiative on Make in India.

The two Ministers agreed to establish a new mechanism of cooperation through multi disciplinary joint R&D network centre focused on “Robotics” and “Computational Materials”. These Centres will be aimed to leverage complimentary R&D strengths of both countries through convergence of competencies in design, simulation and development of advanced manufacturing techniques.

Recognizing the growing interest of Indian and South Korean scientists to work together, both sides agreed to continue supporting joint projects in new emerging areas such as Biomedical devices, clean water technologies, renewable energy  and ICT convergence.

In order to connect next generation of researchers, the two Ministers emphasized the need to augment the reciprocal student internship programme for PhD researchers in science, engineering and medicine

The Korean Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning pledged financial allocation of US$ 10 million over a period of 5 years with necessary financial support by the Ministry of Science & Technology, Govt. of India to support the agreed collaborative activities. The two Science Ministers concluded a Programme of Cooperation in Science & Technology for coming three years.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan expressed that this meeting will provide a new direction and impetus to the Indo-Korean bilateral relationship in contributing to the knowledge economy of both the nations and hoped that there would be tangible development when the two Ministers meet again in 2017.

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