Malaysia aiming for top 10 in Global Competitiveness Index, says Najib
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak wants Malaysia to be one of the top 10 countries in the Global Competitiveness Index and the Global Innovation Index by 2020 through the implementation of the Science to Action (S2A) Initiative.
The S2A is the latest initiative of the prime minister to intensify the application of science and technology for industry development, people's well-being and governance of science, technology and industry that aligns to the New Economic Model.
"The ability to create, distribute and exploit knowledge through science, technology and entrepreneurship has become a major source of competitive advantage, wealth creation and improvements in the quality of life.
"This is why I instructed Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT) through the Office of the Science Advisor to look into putting the S2A Initiative in place.
"I strongly believe the successful implementation of the many science, technology and industry programmes will depend heavily on the close understanding and collaboration between the industry and the government," he said in his speech when launching the S2A Initiative at MIGHT's 20th anniversary dinner here today.
The text of his speech was read out by Second Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh.
Najib said the S2A Initiative is made up of three key components - Science to Industry, Science to Well-Being and Science to Governance.
For Science to Industry, the focus is to establish an innovation culture and strengthen the capabilities of the industry to generate new wealth, which includes the effort to inculcate the Silicon Valley culture of "Innovate or Perish", he said.
"I believe the key to this must be to encourage the government-linked companies and small and medium enterprises to venture into new potential growth areas where returns on investments are multi-fold.
"The government will create a more conducive environment for entrepreneurs and corporations to venture and invest in high-tech based undertakings, building a capability to meet local needs and creating opportunities for the export of products and services," he said.
For Science to Well-Being, Najib said the aim is to upgrade the people's standard of living through the usage and mastery of science, technology and innovation.
"This initiative now being implemented by the Education Ministry also emphasises excellence in the national education system, especially in the field of science, technology, engineering and mathematics by giving specific concentration to the young generation and youths," he said.
As for Science to Governance, the thrust is to strengthen public and private service delivery systems in order to create a conducive environment and ecosystem that can become a catalyst to science development.
"This core initiative will be spurred through the Third National Science, Technology and Innovation Policy overseen by the Science, Technology and Innovation Ministry that was endorsed by the Cabinet in April.
"I want Malaysians of all races and backgrounds to benefit from a high-income economy through inclusiveness and sustainable activities that do not compromise our future generations," he added.
Also present at the launch were Science Advisor to the Prime Minister and Joint-Chairman of MIGHT Prof Emeritus Datuk Seri Dr Zakri Abdul Hamid and MIGHT President and Chief Executive Officer Mohd Yusoff Sulaiman.