• The Sixth Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers for Science and Technology was held in Manila from 2 to 3 February 1994.
  • The Meeting was attended by H.E. Pengiran Dato Seri Paduka Dr. Haji Ismail bin Pengiran Haji Damit, Minister of Development, Brunei Darussalam; H.E. Professor Dr. Ing. B.J. Habibie, Minister of State for Research and Technology, Indonesia; H.E. Datuk Law Hieng Ding, Minister of Science, Technology and the Environment, Malaysia; H.E. Dr. Ricardo T. Gloria, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, the Philippines; H.E. Goh Chee Wee, Minister of State fortrade and Industry and Minister of State for Labour, Singapore; H.E. Preecha Musikul, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment, Thailand; and members of their delegations. H.E. Dato’ Ajit Singh, Secretary-General of ASEAN, and members of his staff were also in attendance.
  • H.E. Fidel V. Ramos, President of the Republic of the Philippines, declared the Meeting officially open.
  • In his keynote address, the President stated that ASEAN has served well as the body through which regional consensus and political will have been manifested. He cited in particular the intensification and acceleration of regional cooperation in science and technology under the ASEAN Committee on Science and Technology (ASEAN COST), through projects that have produced notable results.
  • The President stressed the critical role that sci ence and technology could play to propel ASEAN to greater progress. He cited the challenge to ASEAN in general, and to ASEAN COST in particular, in improv ing ASEAN’s competitiveness and advancing the goals of the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA). In this regard, the President underscored the importance of the Updated ASEAN Plan of Action in Science and Technology which was the highlight of the Ministerial Meeting.
  • In accordance with ASEAN tradition, H.E. Dr. Ricardo T. Gloria, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, the Philippines, as the host country, and H.E. Preecha Musikul, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment, Thailand, as the host of the next Meeting, were unanimously elected Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Meeting, respectively,
  • The Meeting reviewed the progress made in the implementation of the recommendations of the 5th Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers for Science and Technology in September 1992 in Singapore and noted the significant achievements of ASEAN cooperation in science and technology in the fields of food science and technology, meteorology and geophysics, micro electronics and information technology, materials sci ence and technology, biotechnology, non-conven tional energy research, marine sciences, and S&T infrastructure and resources development.
  • The Meeting noted that ASEAN’s Dialogue Part ners, namely, Australia, Canada, the EC, Japan, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, US and UNDP, continue to make significant contributions to the development of S&T capabilities in ASEAN. The Meeting also noted that ASEAN cooperation in S&T has been expanded to cover Sectoral Dialogue with India and Consultative Relations with China. The Meeting further noted that Laos and Vietnam, as observers, could now participate in ASEAN projects on S&T on a case-by-case basis.
  • The Meeting adopted the updated ASEAN Plan of Action on Science and Technology (1994) to further advance science and technology cooperation in AS EAN. The Plan of Action sets the direction of ASEAN scientific and technological cooperation activities for the coming years.
  • The Plan of Action contains five objectives and six strategies namely:

Objectives:

a) a high level of intra-ASEAN cooperation in science and technology that is synergistic and self-sustaining and having the active participation of the private sector;

b) a network of S&T infrastructure and pro grammes for public and private sector human resource development;

c) an active economically-beneficial institution industry technology transfer;

d) an enhanced state of public awareness of the importance of science and technology to ASEAN’s economic development; and

e) an expanded S&T cooperation with the international community.

Strategies:

a) Supporting regionaI S&T programmes that are economically and socially beneficial to ASEAN.

b) Providing close coordination and management of S&T activities.

c) Developing S&T human resources.

d) Information networking of centres of excellence.

e) Promoting institution-industry technology transfer.

f) Promoting S&T awareness.

  • In line with the objectives, the Plan of Action calls for the further strengthening of the existing cooperation programmes and developing new programmes on standards and quality assurance and enabling tech nologies, such as remote sensing and geographic information system (GIS).
  • To support the implementation of the Plan of Action, the Ministers agreed to adopt the following measures aimed at greater self-reliance in funding S&T activities:

a) cost-sharing on the basis of country participa tion for the implementation of projects to be the primary modality for funding S&T activities;

b) the ASEAN Science Fund to be maintained in order to accommodate existing and future contributions; and

c) S&T projects to be submitted for funding support under the ASEAN Fund, as appropriate.

  • Towards the end of their meeting, the Ministers and their Senior Officials participated in a tree planting activity at the ASEAN Garden in Intramuros.
  • The Ministers agreed to hold the 7th Meeting of ASEAN Ministers for Science and Technology in Thailand in 1995 in conjunction with the 4th ASEAN Science and Technology Week.
  • The Ministers from Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand expressed their sincere appreciation to the Government and people of the Republic of the Philippines for the warm hospitality accorded them and the excellent arrangements made for the Meeting.
  • The Meeting was held in the traditional spirit of ASEAN cordiality and solidarity.