Islamabad, 13 December, 2023 (GNP): Prof. Dr. M. Iqbal Choudhary, Coordinator General COMSTECH said that the solution to all problems being faced by the Ummah is in giving the priority to science and technology. He was giving a press briefing to the media persons at COMSTECH on Wednesday.
Prof. Choudhary informed that the difference between the developed and developing world in not the lack of resources, wealth or capital, but it is the knowledge that makes difference.
Prof. Choudhary said that there are 57 OIC member states from South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia inhabiting 1.9 billion people and the 60% population is below the age of 27 years, 23 member states are LDC as per United Nations, share only 2.97% of world high technology export and acquire 1.6% of world patents, expenditure of research and development is 0.3% of GDPs, which is well below the world average, and only 17 universities of the OIC region are in top 50.
Prof. Choudhary said that the challenges of OIC member states include massive poverty, unemployment, inequality, women illiteracy, conflict zones, massive displacement of human population, political instability and frequent disruption of democratic process.
He said that 180 million people are food insecure. He said that out of 10 most climate change venerable countries 5 are in OIC region, including Pakistan, Mozambique, and Maldives. He mentioned that non-functional education system, and over 180 million children of out of school worsening the situation further.
Prof. Choudhary emphasized that science can only help to meet these challenges. He said green and gene revolution can feed the hungry. He said the global life expectancy can exceed to live over 100 years of productive life. He said that antibiotics and antivirals are saving the lives of millions of people today. He said that biotechnology, 3D printing of organs, gene editing, smart computer, synthetic bacteria, and nanotechnology will redefine the world around us.
Prof. Choudhary shared a comprehensive report of COMSTECH programs, past activities and future plans for the socio-economic development of the OIC states.
Replying to the questions from the journalists, he said there is a need of networking and collective efforts to meet the challenges being faced by the Ummah. He said new technologies will be of great help to meet the challenges created by the climate change. He also emphasized the need of the resource mobilization for scientific and technological development of the Ummah.
The briefing was attended by print, electronic and online media persons.