The 94th session of the Council for Science and Technology Policy (CSTP) was held at the Prime Minister's Office on December 10, 2010. At this session, the CSTP first decided to adopt Toward Formulation of the Science and Technology Budget for Fiscal 2011, which calls for efforts to formulate a high-quality budget that properly reflects the results of the priority evaluation compiled in October, and reported the decision. Its views on this matter will be conveyed to the Prime Ministers and other relevant ministers.
In addition, the CSTP discussed after a report on the status of deliberation toward the formulation of the 4th Science and Technology Basic Plan in order to discuss a basic policy for implementing science and technology policy measures as a science and technology national strategy for the coming five years. Council members expressed their opinions about the need to secure sufficient R&D investments, and in particular, Minister of Finance Noda commented, “I recognize the importance of science and technology. Regarding a proposal for specifying the need to secure governmental R&D investments equal to 1% of GDP, we will consider how best to specify the necessary investment in light of the difficult fiscal conditions.” Further discussions will be held on this matter before the submission of a report at the end of the year.
Prime Minister Kan commented, “If Japan is to achieve growth and regain its vigor in its dealings with the world, science and technology should play a crucial role. When I talked with the Bolivian president the other day, I proposed this: since Bolivia is rich in lithium and hopes to create added value, Japan, as a country advanced in the field of lithium batteries, will send a delegation. The Bolivian president welcomed this proposal very much. Many countries around the world wish to achieve economic development as Japan has. As for R&D investments under the 4th Science and Technology Basic Plan, I would like to ask the Council to come to a conclusion while keeping in mind the targets of combined governmental and private investments equal to 4% of GDP and governmental investments equal to 1% of GDP. I believe that because of its human resources and its science and technology capabilities, Japan has achieved economic development despite its lack of natural resources. With this in mind, I am resolved to make further efforts to promote science and technology. I would like to continue seeking counsel from all of you in the Council.”