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Tuesday, June 18th, 2019

Technology Parks Challenges and Opportunities Pakistan’s potential for technology parks discussed at Higher Education Commission Workshop

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Islamabad: A one day workshop on “TECHNOLOGY PARKS CHALLENGES and OPPORTUNITIES” was arranged by the Higher Education Commission Tuesday at its Islamabad Secretariat. Experts from Middle Eastern Technical University Technology Park Ankara, Turkey were invited for experience sharing and mutual cooperation for setting up technology parks in Pakistan.

The workshop is aimed at stimulating and managing the flow of knowledge and technology amongst universities, R and D institutes towards the industry. Public sector Universities of Pakistan were invited to highlight the physical and material resources for research, development and innovation, and also discuss the potential areas for development. The main objective of this exercise is to help universities learn about Technology Parks in general and important pre-requisites in particular.

The experts shared METU experience on Technology Parks with university representatives assessed potential for technology parks in Pakistan as well as possible applications, including non-traditional applications, suitable for the Pakistani environment.

Dr. Riaz Hussain Qureshi, Adviser HRD thanked the participants and highlighted the role of Higher education sector in national R and D activities.

Amongst the speakers, Mr. Asaf Ghafoor, Director General, Pakistan Institute of Trade and Development, Ministry of Commerce presented national Innovation Policy and Export Enhancement and proposed a way forward for development.

He stated that Pakistan is placed at the bottom of Innovation and Competiveness indices translating into low end production of cheap goods and inefficient energy consumption ratio. In view of current resource constraint there is need to utilize existing resources optimally through productivity enhancement reorganizing our R and D infrastructure and moving towards knowledge economy to rectify the dismal situation.

Dr. Masoom Yasinzai, Vice Chancellor Quaid -i-Azam University termed the initiative as an important step for transforming knowledge into productivity for socio-economic development of the country.

Representing the industry, Mr. Imtiaz Rastgar, one of the industry representatives on HEC advisory panel, highlighted the importance of linking industrial clusters for the specific product development to universities keeping the surrounding eco system of that region in view.

He also emphasized the need to recognize campuses as business places where income opportunities can be created and entrepreneurship practiced not just talked about.

Mr. Amer Hashmi, Adviser to Rector on National S and T Park presented NUST ecosystem on National S and T Park, stated that NUST is the first organization from Pakistan to become an Affiliate Member of International Association of Science Parks (IASP) a worldwide network of Science and Technology Parks having 375 members from 70 countries across the world.

Syed Asif Ali Shah, from UET Peshawar highlighted the strengths of the university in terms of PhD faculty and students and shared that currently the university is serving economy through UET Consulting, Continuing Education Centre, Public Policy Cell, Incubation Centre, Office of Research, Innovation and Commercialization, Earthquake centre, Scientific Instrumentation Centre and Gems and Gemmology Centre.

Dr. Shahid Khalil, UET Taxila presented the overview of their university resources and explained that UET Taxila possesses state-of-the-art laboratories that can be utilized by the university industry collaborative projects.

The visiting team will visit NUST, QAU, Pakistan Software and Export Board, Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, Dr. Samar Mubarakmand, Member Science and Technology, Planning Commission and Mr. Salman Siddique, Chairman Federal Board of Revenue and industry units tomorrow before providing input for further progress on the project.

For more information, contact:
Aayesha Ikram
Director (Media)
Higher Education Commission
Sector H-9, Islamabad
Tel: 90402404, 90402412
Email: aikram@hec.gov.pk
Website: www.hec.gov.pk

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