15 Feb 2010

Scientists welcome planned funding boost

6:00 am on 15 February 2010

The science community is welcoming Prime Minister John Key's pledge to boost funding for research and innovation as a way to create world class companies and drive the economy.

In his speech on Tuesday, Mr Key said New Zealand's future economic performance depends on generating and using new ideas, with businesses using science to create more valuable products and services for the world market.

Without mentioning amounts, Mr Key pledged to increase funding to crown research institutes, with a focus on boosting business research and capability.

Royal Society of New Zealand president Garth Carnaby says the Government's commitment is crucial, not only to encourage a new generation of scientists, but also to transform New Zealand businesses.

He says it's crucial for New Zealand which has a small economy with a limited number of successful exports.

Mr Carnaby says the only way to increase exports is to find some good competitive advantages based on new knowledge, new science and research.