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November 8, 2018

‘Lack of funds affecting research & development in Muslim world’


November 8, 2018

Leading Muslim scientists at the 14th International Symposium on Natural Products Chemistry said on Wednesday the spirit of science and technology in the Muslim world had become parched.

It is an open secret that Muslim countries have lagged behind in science and technology in the world, as these countries allocate very limited funds for the promotion and growth of science and development, they said, adding that Muslim scientists needed to have their own network to help each other.

They were speaking at a seminar held at the International Centre for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS), the University of Karachi. Those who attended were Dr Sahar Mustafa (Egypt), Dr Eldar A. Garaev (Azerbaijan), Dr Kamala Kamal (Azerbaijan), Dr Mannan (Lebanon), Dr Nohad A. Al Omari (Iraq), Dr Rami Mamdouh Arfeen (Palestine), Dr Rahim Jantan (Malaysia) and ICCBS Director Prof Dr Muhammad Iqbal Choudhary.

Over 600 eminent scientists and young researchers, including 100 foreign experts, are attending this symposium. Prof Iqbal Choudhary said there was an inadequate allocation of funds for research and development sectors in Muslim nations. Pointing out some causes of this dilemma, he said that lack of political will, internal political instability and failure to be gathered as one Ummah were some of the major causes.

In Pakistan, he observed, political instability, corruption and lack of political will were the main hurdles in the progress of science and technology. Lebanese scientist Dr Mannan said that lack of funds was the major issue in Lebanon, where universities were merely focusing on teaching rather than research.

Describing the state of science in Palestine, Dr Rami Mamdouh Arfeen said universities in Palestine were just teaching-oriented, adding that lack of funds and a trained human resource were really some of the major problems that the Palestinian science and tech sector was facing.

Dr Nohad A. Al Omari said that Iraqi people were skilled and talented, but the country was deprived of a suitable science platform for its scientists. Dr Rahim Jantan said that the world of sciences was completely controlled by the Western world. He suggested that Pakistan should take the lead of the Muslim world on the frontier of science and technology.

Talking about the problems in Azerbaijan, Dr Eldar A Garaev and Dr Kamala Kamal declared the language barrier one of the most important issues making the chances of science promotion slim in the country.

Egyptian scientist Dr Sahar Mustafa said that in her country scientists and scholars had been engaged in writing papers and striving for their official promotions. In other scientific sessions at the 14th International Symposium on Natural Products Chemistry, British scientists Dr Tom Simpson and Prof Dr Michael D Threadgill, French scientist Dr Druno Figadere and many others presented their papers.

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