PUTRAJAYA: Many companies, whose research and development (R&D) activities were funded through the Industry Research and Development Grant Schemes (IGS), have successfully commercialised their products and technologies.
Science Technology an Environment Minister Datuk Seri Law Hieng Ding said that at least 11 such companies, which had received a combined grant of RM25.12mil since 1998, have commercialised their technologies, with returns amounting to RM63.08mil or 251% of the total grant.
He added that overall, the returns derived from R&D activities by local companies, who received funding under the IGS was encouraging.
The scheme was established in 1997 to provide grant incentives to encourage small and medium enterprises to undertake R&D to develop, patent and commercialise technologies, products, systems or processes that have been developed.
Law said that through the IGS and other R&D incentives the Government hoped to build a strong and innovative R&D capability in the industry, especially among small and medium scale enterprises.
The completed projects under the IGS include the domestication and commercialisation of pitcher plants , solid gasification/thermal oxidation plant and electronic kiosk management system.
Law said two other grant schemes based on the concept of risk sharing introduced by the Government to promote the culture of R&D among local industries were the Demonstrator Application Grant Scheme (DAGS) and the Multimedia Super Corridor Research and Development Grant Scheme (MGS).
The introduction of the three schemes, he said, had contributed to the increase in expenditure in R&D activities from RM1.12bil to RM1.7bil within two years.
He said the ministry had also relaxed some criteria for companies interested in applying for the MGS to include foreign-owned companies with at least 30% local equity, provided they have been granted MSC status.
Previously, only companies with at least 51% local equity were eligible for the grant.