Decree to facilitate science, technology activities

The Ministry of Science and Technology (MST) is drafting a Government decree that will revise and supplement some articles of the 2014 document on investment and financial mechanisms for scientific and technological activities.

The move is part of the MST’s efforts to press on with perfecting the legal corridor for promoting the development of science, technology, and innovation as Vietnam is paying more attention to these areas.

The new decree, which will amend Decree No. 95/2014/ND-CP, will include contents related to funding for the repair and upgrade of public assets, spending on the development of scientific and technological potential, and investment in and support for the construction of technical infrastructure for science and technology organizations.

Some regulations on expenditure of State-owned science and technology organisations will also be revised. The draft will add rules to the procurement of equipment and machinery serving the organizations' regular and specialized activities.

Spending on innovation-related activities will also be stipulated, including developing start-up and innovation ecosystems, innovation centers, startup and innovation support centers and innovation networks, building governance capacity and new business and innovation models, along with training and consulting.

In 2023, spending on science and technology accounted for 0.82 percent of the State budget’s total expenditures, including 0.23 percent on investment and 0.58 percent on regular expenditures. The total sum declined from 1.01 percent in 2022 and 1.18 percent in 2017, according to the Ministry of Finance.

Minister of Science and Technology Huynh Thanh Dat noted there is a relatively big gap in the budget expenditure on science and technology between Vietnam and other countries. For example, in 2017, the spending stood at 2.83 percent in the US, 1.96 percent in China, 2.6 percent in Singapore, and 1.25 percent in Malaysia.

Last year, the State Budget’s regular expenditure on science and technology totalled VND12 trillion (over US$478 million), comprising VND8.8 trillion from the central budget and about VND3.2 trillion from local budgets, he added.

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