Scientific and technological (S&T) activities in the Philippines and Thailand recently got a big push as science and technology leaders in both countries signed a legally binding agreement to work together in promoting the development of S&T cooperation between said countries.

Representing the Philippines and Thailand are Department of Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña and Ministry of Science and Technology Minister Atchaka Sibunruang respectively.

According to the agreement, the Philippines and Thailand shall carry out S&T cooperation in joint research and development; exchange of scientists, specialists, and representatives of academic, research, industrial, and trade organizations; exchange of technical documentation and information; arrangement of bilateral conferences and symposia on subjects of mutual interest; and other forms of cooperation in the field of science and technology.

The two governments also concurred to include visits and exchanges of S&T specialists in fields beyond the agreed areas in the current agreement.

According to Sec. de la Peña, representatives of both Philippines and Thailand shall meet as soon as possible to negotiate the programmes and approve the areas and terms of S&T cooperation. They shall also agree on ways and means to accomplish programme items and discuss other matters related to the cooperation.

The Philippine-Thailand agreement shall also pave the way to link up organizations, agencies, universities, and firms in both countries, and conclude implementing arrangements. To run for five years, the program shall start this March 2017 and end in March 2023. (Framelia V. Anonas, S&T Media Service)