30 projects to be pitched to businesses

About 30 research projects from units under the Science and Technology Ministry and its partners in the manufacturing and service sectors will be introduced to the public next week.

Science and Technology Minister Plodprasop Surasawadee said more than 400 people from 80 companies, from small businesses to big conglomerates, were being invited to attend the research presentations and take part in business matchmaking.

The National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA) will stage the NSTDA Investors Day next week at Centara Grand at CentralWorld. Researchers, whose expertise in business and marketing is limited, will be invited to meet business operators to discuss their requirements to help improve their work and skills.

NSTDA president Thaweesak Koanantakul said the programme aimed to encourage state and private sectors to expand their research and development budgets and activities. Thailand’s average R&D budget is only 0.21% of gross domestic product (GDP) compared to 4% in Taiwan and South Korea.

Investors who are interested in business matchmaking will have many choices such as paying licence fees for research use, buying a research licence, or forming a joint venture with a research house.

Among the 30 research projects, the highlights are five that could be developed for mass production. They include biodegradable bags for tree nurseries, hydrogen ion meters, enzymes for paper bleaching, a zero-watt standby electrical system, and a multi-functional air filter.

Other research projects are in the agricultural, food, health, electronics and biology areas.

As the country’s largest research house in terms of facility area (more than 100,000 square metres) and number of researchers (1,600 people), the agency registers about 180 patents per year and has accumulated 3,000 patents to date.

“We need to encourage the business sector to look for new innovations to develop business by joining with us,” said Dr Thaweesak.

The NSTDA in the next fiscal year will increase its R&D budget by 12.5% to 4.5 billion baht. The budget is the highest among Thailand’s private and state agency sectors.



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