LAUNCHES 3RD GRASSROOTS INNOVATION FORUM 2022 BY ASEAN - INDIA
PHNOM PENH, 19 December 2022 – The ASEAN Committee on Science, Technology and Innovation (COSTI) in partnership with the Government of India’s Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the National Innovation Foundation (NIF) – India launched the 3rd ASEAN-India Grassroots Innovation Forum 2022 today.
The launch kicks-off a three-day forum on 19-21 December at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The forum also celebrates ASEAN-India Friendship year as both sides commemorate 30 years of partnership.
Deputy Secretary-General for ASEAN Economic Community Satvinder Singh highlighted the significant contribution of grassroots innovators. “Grassroots innovators often operate as informal businesses and contribute to the informal economy,” he said. “On average, in 2021, the informal economy represents 35% of GDP in low- and middle-income countries and 15% in advanced economies. In this regard, public and private institutions need to understand grassroots innovation sociocultural dynamics and encourage innovation, particularly towards advancing the circular economy. Policymakers, especially the local government, must acknowledge grassroots innovators as valuable contributors to creativity, employment, and productivity,” he added.
Meanwhile, DST Secretary Dr Srivari Chandrasekhar pointed out, “India attached high importance to grassroots and student innovations in our science, technology, and innovation policy as these are not just integral to it but also its significant driving forces. I urge our friends in ASEAN Member States (AMS) to continue their commitment towards social innovations and collectively ensure that tomorrow is better than today for each one of us. It is heartening to note a similar thrust amongst AMS, hence, it is one of the finest instances of like-mindedness that nations could think of in today’s world as the benefits of such policies cumulatively touch a billion lives in Asia alone.”
“Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation holds much importance in contemporary times. It has a key potential to accelerate our march towards our developmental goals. It has an inherent potential to bring people together; countries together and in our case today, India and the ASEAN Member States together.” said Dr. Devyani Uttam Khobragade, ambassador of the Republic of India to the Kingdom of Cambodia.
Dr. Kan Channmeta, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation (MISTI) Cambodia, further addressed, “The 3rd ASEAN-India Grassroots Innovation Forum 2022 is an international pioneer event in Cambodia organised not only to promote science, technology, innovations, entrepreneurship and the development of the IR 4.0 but also to create opportunities for students and grassroots innovators to learn from each other’s innovation during competitions. He wishes to have more opportunities to grow together, aligned with “Shared values, common destiny” approach that India and ASEAN have been advocating in recent times for strengthening the relationships. “
The three-day forum provides a platform for participants to share experiences and best practices in grassroots innovation among ASEAN and Indian communities. The event comprises seminar sessions, innovation competitions, and an exhibition. By bringing together key players, namely government officials, grassroots innovators, student innovators, academics, business actors, and the wider community, this forum provides a platform to promote and strengthen the development of the grassroots innovation ecosystem.
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