Asia to spend billions in nanotech research

March 11, 2002 | Source: KurzweilAI

Asia is investing big in nanotech. South Korea plans to spend US $1.3 billion over the next 10 years, said Professor Y. Kuk, Professor of Physics at Seoul National University, speaking at the recent Inaugural Conference of the recent Asia Pacific Nanotechnology Forum in Tsukuba, Japan.

Japan, Taiwan, and China are also making substantial investments.

Taiwan will spend about $600 million over the next six years and make nanotech a national priority, according to Professor M.K. Wu, Vice Chairman of Taiwan’s National Science Council.

Japan’s projected national budget for nanotechnology-related project grants is slated to increase by 63 percent during 2002 to approximately ¥59 billion (US $444 million), according to Dr. Y. Tokumasu, Planning Director of Research and Development, METI.

About 35 percent of the funds from the Japanese government will go for nanotech-related information technology, 30 percent for nanomaterials, and the balance for “analysis processing,” energy and medical research, said Professor T. Kishi, President, National Institute Materials Sciences, MEXT (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

Overall, Japan plans to commit 1% of its GDP (¥24 trillion or $180 billion) to R&D for 2001-2005, a 41% increase over last year, Tokumasu said.

China’s national government will spend about CNY 2 billion (approximately US $242 million) in nanotech research over the next five years. China’s nanotech research now spans more than 50 universities, 20 institutes, and more than 100 enterprises, said Dr. Y. H. Ma of the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology.

nAbacus Ltd. of Hong Kong produced the conference, with high-level support from Japanese government agencies METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Japan), AIST and NRI.

– Nathen Fox, correspondent