The Federal Government’s Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) has allocated a budget of Rs 5.5 billion for the Science and Technology Sector schemes in the upcoming fiscal year 2023-2024.
As per the PSDP document, the federal government has proposed Rs 5,025 million for 31 ongoing Science and Technology schemes, Rs 449 million for 8 new schemes, and Rs 25 million for two unapproved schemes under the Science and Technology Division, all falling within the purview of PSDP for the next financial year.
Specifically, the proposed budget allocation includes Rs 150 million for the SME Certification Incentive Program, Rs 14.8 million for Cloud Enabled Infrastructure, Rs 190 million for the Competitive Research Program, and Rs 300 million for the Medical and Industrial Cannabis Project.
Furthermore, the production of biochemicals and bioproducts is suggested to receive Rs 40 million and Rs 463 million respectively. The Material Resource Centre and Reverse Engineering Center at PCSIR are proposed to be funded with Rs 300 million, while Rs 200 million is allocated for PCSIR’s digital transformation and automation. Additionally, the establishment of the Failure Analysis Centre is suggested with a budget of Rs 150 million.
Other proposed allocations include Rs 217 million for the Center for International Peace and Stability at NUST, Rs 30 million for the Centre for Artificial Intelligence in Health Science, and Rs 350 million for the Research and Development of Indigenous Electromedical Devices at NUST.
For various projects, the establishment of facilities for industrial production of nanomaterials is proposed with a budget of Rs 290.8 million. Additionally, Rs 52.9 million is proposed for the establishment of a Pak Korea PV Module Testing Facility, Rs 50 million for the establishment of a planning, monitoring, and evaluation cell at the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST), and Rs 27 million for supporting scientific societies in Pakistan through financial contributions.
Moreover, the government plans to allocate Rs 200 million for initiating STEM projects in Pakistan and Rs 430 million for gene editing of biological agents for nutritional, biochemical, and therapeutic purposes.
Apart from these mentioned projects, funding has also been requested for the Medical Equipment & Devices Innovation Center, Monitoring of Sea Water, National Digital Archive of Research Published in Pakistan, Science Talent Farming Scheme, Semiconductor Chip Design Facilitation Centre, Strengthening of Oceanographic Research, and several other initiatives.