UK commits £10M to science innovation in Philippines

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The United Kingdom is prepared to invest £2 million annually (approximately PhP146.7 million per year) over the next five years to fund innovative science collaborations between the UK and the Philippines, according to a press release from the British Embassy in Manila.

The Newton Fund, launched by the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne in April, is a global initiative that aims to invest a total of £375 million (PhP27.5 billion) annually over a five-year period to support collaborations on science and innovation that focus on economic development around the world.

The Philippines has been singled out as one of the select few countries that the UK is eager to establish partnerships with, and to which a portion of the fund has been allocated.

The British Embassy is currently looking for potential partners in the Philippines and hopes to begin projects in earnest as early as the second half of 2014.

“The Newton Fund will engage British and Filipino scientists as partners to increase their research and innovation capacity. The application of knowledge tailored to the needs of the people of the Philippines will address their current priorities and address long-term sustainable growth,” said British Ambassador Asif Ahmad in the press release.

Among the priority development concerns that the Newton Fund-supported projects will tackle are environmental resilience; food and energy security; and health.

Aside from joint research and development projects, the Newton fund also covers researcher training and fellowships, and capacity-building programs.

Other countries that will benefit from the fund include Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mexico, South Africa and wider Africa, Thailand, Turkey, and Vietnam.

By : Kim Luces/TJD, Gmanetwork.com

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