By Usman Muhammed
As part of efforts to enable a knowledge based and innovation driven economy, the Federal Government is to boost a friendly Intellectual Property Right (IPR) environment in the country.
The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu disclosed this at the 2018 edition of the African Day for Technology and Intellectual Property held over the weekend in Abuja.
A friendly intellectual Property Right environment, he added, will enhance innovation activities and attract Foreign Direct Investment, adding that technology transfer and acquisition will follow as a matter of course.
Dr.Onu said the present administration is determined to utilize science and technology to drive the economy in line with the Economy Recovery and Growth Plan (ENGP) 2017- 2020.
No nation in history in the ancient and modern world, he explained, has ever developed without the deployment of Science and Technology.
“Recent global development has made it evident that natural resources endowment is no longer the prime source of natural wealth and prosperity. Science, Technology and Innovation has become the key driving force in propelling national economic development and competiveness”. Dr. Onu added.
He further said that “Technology is used as a tool to enhance national competiveness. Nations are no longer valued in terms of its population, geographical landmass or minerals resources but on the organic mass of knowledge encapsulated in its citizenry”
He observed that in today’s knowledge-based economy and globalized business environment, absorption of new technology has become a vital component for nations and particularly companies to survive through maintaining their competitive position in the market place.
Dr. Onu challenged the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) to continue to assist inventors from all ministries, research institutes, universities, polytechnics, Organized Private’s Sectors (OPS) to protect their patents.
He added that with the impressive increase recorded in the number of patents from 16 in 2016 to over 50 in 2017, Nigeria was really making progress.
Earlier, in his opening remarks, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr. Bitrus Bako Nabasu mni said that the objective of the programme is to improve the capacity, creativity and innovativeness of Nigerians under an effective Intellectual Property Rights system.
Government science Secondary School Garki, Government Day Secondary School Karu and Vocational Educational Institute Gwagwalada came first, second and third respectively in the young scientists’ research and innovation competition among selected schools at the occasion.