President ECOSF participated as an invited speaker in the Science to Enable and Empower Asia Pacific for COVID 19 response organized by the UNESCO Regional Science Bureau for Asia and the Pacific

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Science to Enable and Empower Asia Pacific for COVID 19 response a special webinar, was held by UNESCO Jakarta Office supported by Japanese Funds-in-Trust (JFIT) and Malaysia Funds-in-Trust (MFIT) on Tuesday, 19 May 2020, via video conferencing, in order to take stock of the impact of the pandemic on UNESCO’s regional science networks, and to discuss on how respond to the challenges. Registered participants were 1,627 from across 24 countries.

The webinar was officiated by Prof. Yasuto Tachikawa, representing Japanese National Commission for UNESCO, Mr. Mohammad Sanusi Abdul Karim, Secretary-General of Malaysian National Commission for UNESCO and Prof. Shahbaz Khan, Director of UNESCO Office in Jakarta and Regional Bureau for Science. On behalf of ECOSF, its President Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro participated as an invited speaker in the webinar.

In his remarks, President ECOSF Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro underscored that the COVID-19 has exposed the fragile limits of healthcare facilities and infrastructures around the world. Prof. Soomro shared the status of healthcare and ICT infrastructure in the 10 ECO Member Countries and their response during this pandemic. He further underlined that the COVID-19 pandemic requires decisive and swift actions to respond to this overwhelming challenge. He urged the Member Countries to increase the budget allocations for the health and science sectors and make significant investments on Science, Engineering, Technology and Innovation and Science Education.

The discussion was held around Youth in Science, Engineering, Technology, and Innovation (SETI) for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR); Open Science, Technopreneurship and Science Communication; Water and Environmental Sciences and UNESCO’s site-based networks. Colleagues from 11 UNESCO Offices and HQ SC sector also presented their views and future directions in response to the ideas shared by stakeholders.

The main output of the webinar is the Asia Pacific Statement of Action by the UNESCO Science Family in Asia and the Pacific in Response to COVID-19 Challenges. These set of recommendations reaffirm that UNESCO alongwith its partners including the ECOSF and its science networks will work collaboratively to mobilize scientific research and innovation across Asia and the Pacific.

The webinar can be accessed at

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