To boost the advancement of emerging technologies in the Bangsamoro region, Asia-Pacific for Critical Links, Incorporated and e-DRIS, Incorporated, slated a courtesy visit to Minister Aida Silongan on July 18, 2022, at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Bangsamoro Government Center, Cotabato City.

One of the main points of the visit was to discuss with Minister Silongan the emerging technologies that would help the information system, advance science and technology intervention of the ministry, and address the needs of the Bangsamoro people through innovative technologies. It is to collaborate and contribute to the development of the ministry by leveraging science and technology in the region.

Emerging technologies used to describe a new technology or a continuing development of an existing technologies.

For the visitors to know and understand the programs and projects of MOST, Nasrodin Buisan, Chief of Technical Management and Operation Division – Designate, discussed the four major programs. Research and Development, Science and Technology Services, Science Education, Scholarships, Grants, and the Bangsamoro Halal Testing Laboratories.

Buisan shared that one of the challenges encountered under research and development is the insufficient submission of proposals that would develop and provide product output or tangible technologies that would impact and improve the lives of the Bangsamoro. Thus, for the upcoming year 2023, the ministry has strategized the Call for Proposals into a Call for Application to focus on the key priorities or plans of the ministry that would significantly help the people of BARMM directly. It is not merely the submission of proposals but things that would serve for better improvement in the community.

He also shared that the advanced science and technology of the ministry would cater to and implement emerging technologies once the division was established well. It is because the ministry is still in the process of hiring to fill in the human resource for each division and section of the organization.

Also, one of the highlights of the discussion is the establishment of technology hub centers in the provinces of BARMM. The managers/visitors have driven support on this as it will focus on the community’s specific technology needs and development. They would also collaborate on the possible needs they could help in establishing a techno-hub.

Syed Darwish Bederi, Critical Links Regional Manager, discussed how streamlining data would help implement projects at the grass root level. He also shared that emerging technologies are innovative ways to solve and leverage problems.

Furthermore, Minister Silongan offered Mr. Bederi  a Balik Scientist Program of the Department of Science and Technology to serve in the Bangsamoro region and share his expertise to promote scientific, agro-industrial, and economic development, including the development of human capital in science, technology, and innovation. The program also aims to encourage knowledge sharing, strengthen S & T Capabilities, and accelerate the flow of technologies.

Mr. Bederi was glad of the offer and would eventually accept it.

Minister Silongan also encouraged the visitors to submit proposals that would significantly impact the community in BARMM, emerge technology application, and help solve the pressing needs encountered in the region.

The meeting ended with a commitment to support, collaboration, and convergence on science and technology advancement, creating partnerships and harmonized roadmap on technologies.