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   Conferences / The Twelfth General Conference:Islam and Mutations of the Epoch
Co-operation Between The Islamic Ummah And The Developed World In The Field Of Technology

Co-operation Between The Islamic Ummah And The Developed
World In The Field Of Technology
Prof. Yousry M. Moursi
President Of The Academy Of
Scientific Research And Technology.
This collaboration takes place through several governmental
organisations viz. those organisations harboured within the organisation of
Islamic Conference (OIC) or through non-governmental agencies.
The following summarizes this collaboration beginning by the mother
organisation, the OIC.
I. Islamic Governmental Science And Technology Organisations
1- The Organisation Of Islamic Conference (OIC)
It was established in 1969 after the attack on Al-Aqsa Mosque when the
standing Committee for Al Quds was established and chaired by his majesty
the Late King Al-Hassan 2th of Morocco. (Allah Blesses his soul).
The organisation has grown up through the years to embody 56
Muslim Countries. Its General Secretariat is seated in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
and reports to the Council of Foreign Ministers, which in turn reports to the
Islamic Summit. The Secretariat is chaired by the Secretary General who is
assisted by 4 Assistants. It also embodies 8 Subordinate Organisations
(IFSTAD-The Islamic Foundation for Science, Technology and Development
being suspended in 1997).
The Organisation also patrons 2 other types of organisations depending
on their capabilities to raise funds for their financing: Specialized
Organisation which might be funded by donations from OIC and the
Affiliate Institutions which seek their own funding mechanisms.
The OIC harbours 3 other Standing Presidential Committees in
addition to Al-Quds one.
I. COMCEC- The Standing Ministerial Committee for Commercial
and Economic Cooperation chaired by the President of Turkey and its
members are the respective Ministers of Commerce, Trade and Economy.
II. COMIAC- The Standing Ministerial Committee for Information
and Cultural Communication chaired by the President of Senegal and its
members are the respective Ministers of Information and Cultural Affairs.
III. COMSTECH- The Standing Ministerial Committee for Scientific
and Technical Co-operation chaired by the President of Pakistan and its
members are the respective Ministers of Scientific Research.
1-1. The Islamic Foundation For Science, Technology And
Development (IFSTAD).
It was entrusted since its establishment in 1975 with all the issues of
Science and Technology in the OIC. It was even mandated as the temporary
Secretariat of COMSTECH in the interim period until the latter established
its own permanent Secretariat at the Pakistan Academy of Sciences in
Islamabad in 1988.
- Strengthening scientific and technological researches and their
application for the welfare of Islamic Countries.
- Encouraging co-operation and collaboration in scientific and
technological fields in the Islamic world.
- Ensuring the embodiment of science and technology in the social and
economic policies and the targets that the countries hope to achieve.
- Providing consultancies and implementing scientific studies for the
benefit of the Islamic Countries and the OIC.
The Broadlines of The 5 Year Plan:
1- Co-ordination between the various institutions working in the field
of technology that is of importance to the Islamic World.
2- Upgrading the scientific and technology capabilities of member
countries and the Islamic Ummah.
3- Support of international centres having the expertise in science and
4- Providing the science and technology services.
5- Co-ordination of programmes with the concerned Islamic
6- Data collection, data handling and dispersal throughout the Islamic
IFSTAD carried out and published surveys of scientific and technical
manpower, and of universities and research institutions in the Islamic
Countries. It also provided a number of grants for post- graduate studies in
universities of the member countries or abroad to Moslem students in
certain specialisations.
The 5 year plans of IFSTAD embodied 7 programs viz.
Science and Technology Policies, Information, Upgrading of Human
Capabilities. Co-operation and Co-ordination, Technology Transfer
(Horizontally and Vertically) Environment and Biotechnology. However, as
mentioned earlier, IFSTAD'S activities were suspended since 1997.
1-2 The Ministerial Standing Committee For Scientific And
Technological Co-operation (COMSTECH)
The Committee is chaired by the President of Pakistan, Its Deputy
Chairman is the Prime Minister of Pakistan while the administration and
management of its activities is carried out by a re-known Pakistani scientist
as Co-ordinator General who chairs the Executive Bureau (8 members
Board) of the Committee. He also heads the Permanent Secretariat of the
The Executive Bureau runs the business of the Committee to achieve its
goals in between the biennial sessions of its General Assembly which
represents the supreme authority of the Committee. (The last session of the
GA was held at Islamabad in November 1999 while the first was held 1983).
- To survey and evaluate the human and material resources in the
member countries and estimate the need.
- To establish and strengthen the endemic capabilities in the member
Countries in areas of science and technology.
- To encourage continuous co-operation and collaboration between
Islamic Countries to achieve the overwhelming power to solve problems
facing them in science and technology.
- To establish the outline of institutional systems to plan for research
and development, getting acquainted with the scientific and technological
activities in the fields of high technology both on the region al level and the
Islamic Ummah at large.
COMSTECH adopted in 1984 its 20 - year Action Plan,
comprising the following:
a- Eight major fields (Thrust Areas) viz. Food and Agriculture, Health,
Manpower and Resources Development, Research and Development,
Information and Documentation, Development of Current and Future
Technologies, Natural Resources Development and Energy.
b- Establishing the Islamic Academy of Sciences and 6 Inter-Islamic
Networks (focal points in a number of fields among the following list.
- Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (INOGE) in Cairo-Egypt.
- Management of Water Resources (INWARDAM) In Amman- Jordan.
- New and Renewable Energy (INRES) in Islamabad-Pakistan.
- Space Sciences and Technology (ISNET) in Karachi-Pakistan.
- Oceanography (INOC) in Izmir-Turkey.
- Tropical Medicine (INTROM) in Kuala Lumpur,
- Computer Technology-Plant Genetics-Physical Standards-
and Technological Information-Technology Transfer-Food and
Agriculture-Development of Scientific
Policy and Technical Economic Studies-The Islamic University of
Science and Technology (at Morocco).
Four other Networks are in the pipe-line, Desertification Control at Al-
Am, Emirates; Micro-electronics at Kuala Lumpur Malaysia; Pollution
Control and Physical Standards (the headquarters of the latter two networks
not yet settled upon).
In addition, the following 4 institutions are anticipated: The Islamic
Federation of Research Institutions (IFRI), the Islamic Information Centre,
The Islamic Agency for Activating Scientific Research, and Upgrading
Capabilities in LDCs.
The Integrated Program for Regional Development in the Field of
Science and Technology in the LDCs comprises the following:
- A regional network of computer centres and computer training
- Mobile centers for scientific awareness.
- Equipment and apparatus maintenance workshops.
- Fund-raising technologies supporting technology acquisition,
transfer, implementation and control.
Areas of Technology, Short term: Protection against Disease
Drinking Water, Embryo-Transfer Technology.
Medium / Long term: Dairy Farms-Disease Control Oil Seeds-
Natural Resources Management-Pollution Control-Illiteracy Control-
Agricultural Weather Forecasts.
The Islamic Countries need 1.5 million professional, trained efficient
and skilled scientists, engineers and technicians. The available force is only
about half a million. This calls for a high degree of scientific and technical
education efficiency, the appropriate rewarding jobs, material, non-
material and social incentives and counter- acting brain-drain.
Post-Graduate Studies: Diplomas, M. Sc. and Ph. Ds. in the
following fields:
Remote Sensing-Health Physics-Laser and Optical Fibbers
Technology, Tissue Culture-Research Methods in Chemistry-Applied
Parasitology, Computer Processes Control-Medical Microbiology.
COMSTECH held its Latest (9th) biennial General Assembly in November
1999 and adopted the following broad lines of its Action Plan for the
biennium 2000/ 2001.
Section A: Comprises 19 items of priority on-going programs to be
funded from COMSTECH's funds and member country contributions:
1. COMSTECH's visiting Scientists Program. Short-term visits for
re-known scientists and for short-term post-graduate grants for young
2. COMSTECH's Spare-parts for Scientific Equipment Program with
in US 500 per request for each equipment.
3. COMSTECH Awards US 5000 for each prize in the 4 fields:
Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics (Two prizes awarded
4. Scientific Literature Search Service in Research and Applied Fields
for the OIC Scientific Community.
5. COMSTECH's Information Technology Centers in OIC Member
Countries (3 Centres already established so far, (in Khartoum, The Sudan,
in Male-Maldive Islands and in Freetown, Sierra Leone).
6. Profile of the Islamic World reporting on the available resources in
Islamic Countries.
7. COMSTECH/ ISESCO Date Base of active Scientists and
Institutions in OIC member states and their Recent Publications. Three
volumes have already been published covering the researches of scientists
from 15 Islamic Countries. Steps are being taken to be able read them on
the Internet.
8. Research support for young scientists.
9. COMSTECH's Travel Assistance to Scientists Attending Seminars,
Workshops and / or Conferences aboard.
10. COMSTECH's Assistance to hold Conferences, Workshops and /
or Seminars.
11. COMSTECH's Assistance to Scientists for Field Trips and
Scientific Expenditures.
12. COMSTECH's Short-Term Technicians-Training Programme.
13. COMSTECH's Collaborative Programme with ISESCO:
- Two workshops were held on Laser Applications and University
Industry Interaction.
- Two books were published on the Strategy for Development of
Science and Technology in Islamic Countries and the Conservation of
- A meeting of focal points in Genetic Engineering and
Biotechnology was held in Islamabad.
- Another Symposium on Medicinal Plants and their Possible
Remedial Action in the pipe-line.
- Critical Evaluation of the Commercial and Industrial Applications
of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology.
- Funding Projects in Biotechnology submitted by young
- Training of School-teachers on Laboratory and Experimental
- Funding Projects on Utilization of Renewable Energy by
young scientists and 2 other projects on the Technical Applications
in the Production Sector.
14. COMSTECH's Collaborative Programe with the International
Foundation of Science (IFS). Co-operation entails provision of seed-money
support to 23 projects from 13 Islamic Countries.
15. COMSTECH's in-House Activities Publications.
16. COMSTECH's in-House Activities Holding Meetings and
17. COMSTECH's in-House Activities Follow-up and Projects'
18. COMSTECH's Secretariat Building.
19. COMSTECH's Secretariat Recurring Expenditure.
Section B: Comprises 3 items for which COMSTECH is soliciting
funds from International Donors including the Islamic Bank for
Development (1DB) (Beyond the contributions of member states).
20. Collaborative financial Support between COMSTECH and IDB
for young researchers (Support for 7 Projects; of which 5 are in
Biotechnology form 6 Countries).
21. Collaborative support between COMSTECH and 1DB for young
researchers from LDC's within the OIC Member Countries for post-
graduate studies of the M. Sc. (Beneficiaries from 18 countries).
22. Collaborative Program between COMSTECH and the 1DB in
support of transferring knowledge through Exchange of Expatriate Muslim
Scientists (on similar grounds as TOKTEN program of UNDP).
Section C: Special Projects Carried Over from Previous Biennia
Awaiting Funding; 13 items in toto.
23. Institution Building:
COMSTECH Supports the existing Islamic Academy of Sciences (lAS)
and the 6 existing Inter-Islamic Networks (IINETS) for:
- Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (INOGE) in Cairo-Egypt.
- Oceanography (INOC) in Izmir, Turkey.
- Water Resources Management (INWARDAM) at Amman, Jordan.
- Space Sciences and Technology (ISNET) at Karachi, Pakistan.
- New and Renewable Energies (INRES) at Islamabad, Pakistan.
- Tropical Medicine (INTROM) at Kuala Lumpor, Malaysia.
24. Two more networks are in the pipe-line; Micro-electronics in
Malaysia and Desertification Control at Al-Ain, Emirates.
25. Establishing the Islamic University of Science and Technology in
Morocco (The only adopted resolution from a group of 15 similar
26. Futurologies.
27. Development of human resources through : holding Symposia and
28. Development of human resources through : New Curricula.
29. Development of human resources through : Anticipated Calendar
of Training Courses.
30. Development of human resources through : Incentives and Awards
to sensitize Scientists, and Engineers working in Research and
31. Supporting the Suggested Solutions of Problems Facing Member
32. Short-term Training Courses for re-known Scientists on Advanced
Technology Fields.
33. Data Bases on Manpower; Scientific, Technological Institutions,
Universities and Research Organisations in the Muslim World.
34. COMSTECH Fellowships' Award Program to Ph. D. and Post- Ph.
D. Graduates.
35. COMSTECH Fellowships' Award Program in Research and
36. Health Improvement in OIC Member Countries.
37. Research and Development.
38. Fund-Raising Projects.
Section A amounts to 5,966,933 US
Section B amounts to 5,120,000 US
Section C amounts to 6,545,000 US
Total Anticipated Budget 17,631,933 US
1-3 The Islamic Academy of Sciences (IAS)
It is one of the institutions within COMSTECH which was established
by IFSTAD in 1986 at Amman hosted by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
who granted her the regular privileges and immunities common in such
cases. Jordan has also granted (IAS) an annual grant to meet the running
expenses and also allocated a plot of land to establish the permanent
headquarters of the Academy.
The Academy receives grants in-aid from several agencies, e.g.
COMSTECH, 1DB, UNESCO and the International Bank. The Academy
awards an annual Prize for merit in medical work in commemoration of the
Late Egyptian Heart Specialist Prof. M. Ibrahim, a founding member of the
IAS is administered by a Council of 11 members who meets twice a
year and the General Assembly (GA) attended by all (71) members + 5
honorary ones (representing 25 Islamic Countries). The GA meets every
year at the time of Annual Conference of the Academy which usually report
on a novel theme every year. (The forthcoming 10th Conference will be held
at Kotching, Sarawak, Malaysia late this year).
The basic plan of the Academy harbours 3 programs:
1. Islam and Science.
2. Development of Science and Technology Capabilities in the Islamic
a- Supporting activities related to contemporary issues viz.:
Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology- Biomedical Technology-
Food and Agriculture- Plant Genetics-Physical Standards-New
Materials- Tropical Medicine- Computer Technology- Energy
Nuclear Technology- Space Sciences- Ocean Sciences- Micro
electronics- Laser and Fibber Optics-Robotics- Remote Sensing.
b- Encouraging Scientific and Technological Excellence.
c- Co-operation with the following Countries and Organisations; viz.
UNESCO, ISECO, UNEP, Kuwaiti Federation for Advancement of
Science, TUBITAK, International Bank, 1DB, Rss of Jordan, TWAS,
Academies of Science in Central Asian commonwealth- King Abdul
Aziz City for Science and Technology, Riyadh- and the private firm
3. Information and Data Dispersal through brochures, newsletters,
databases video- tapes, CDs, Internet and e-mail.
IAS published the Arabic version of Islamic thought and Scientific
Innovation and also publishes a reputable scientific journal since 1988 (4 -
issues a year to become 6 issues / year within a lapse of 2 years at most). It is
going to be published on Internet as well.
IAS embodies 5 standing committees concerned with:
Science and Technology Policies- Natural Resources Development,
Development of Advanced Technologies- Manpower in Science and
Technology, Environment and Development.
IAS also organizes training courses in the Islamic Countries that have
the necessary expertise for implementing them, viz.:
Welding Technology, Metal Corrosion, Non-destructive Testing of
Materials, Treatment and Management of Industrial Waste Water-
Applications of Radio- Isotope Technology, Hydrology of Radio- Isotopes,
Updates in Informatics- Assessment of Radon in the Environment.
1.4-Islamic Development Bank (IDB)
The general frame-work of the policies adopted by the Bank in sup
porting science and technology in member countries of OIC is derived from
the resolutions adopted from Macca Al-Mukarramah' s Declaration and
from the Action plan for CO-operation between the Member Countries as
adopted by the 3rd Islamic Summit of Macca Al Mukarramah in 1981 and
implementing the document of approved policies agreed upon by the
Council of Executive Directors of the Bank in April 1993.
The Bank established in 1987 a Committee for Science and
Technology to advise the Bank on Scientific and Technological issues.
The Bank participates in various aspects of technology and
development acquisition through financing projects either as technical
assistance or as technology bids in technical co-operation.
- Grants for University studies, grants for the top ranking
- Networking of information systems among member countries
(since 1997).
- Biotechnology and Bio-saline Agriculture.
The following projects were sectorally funded:
1. Agriculture and Agricultural Industries
227 projects 16.6% of total funds
2. Mineralogy and Industry 137 projects 18.4% of
total funds
3. Social Services 197 projects 19.1% of
total funds
4. Public Utilities 170 projects 25.5% of total funds
5. Transport and Communication 175 projects 16.7% of total funds
6. Budgetary Services, others 62 projects 3.7% of total
Total 968 4215.75 Billion Isl. D
#5.775.54 Billion US
The Technical Cooperation Programme comprises the following:
1- Funding 7 (5 in biotechnology) projects approved by COMSTECH
to benefit 6 Islamic Countries.
2- Short-term activities for technology transfer through symposia,
workshops, conferences or training courses, viz.
Land Reclamation and Irrigation-Artificial Irrigation in Agriculture-
Medicine and surgery- Mari culture- Modelling for Under - ground Water
Flow and Classifying its Properties- Spinning and Machinery Heart
Diseases and Endoscopy of Internal Medicine- Apple Juice Plant- Three-
Dimensional Modelling of Under- ground- Water- Integrated Pest- Control
Management- Water Supply Systems- Date Palm Trees- Artificial
Irrigation Water in Agriculture-Industry of Information Technology- The
Problem of 2 YK (2000)- Generation and Distribution of Energy- Biosaline
Agriculture- Updating Scientific Engineering and Nutritional Curricula-
Mineralisation and Benefication of Phosphate Ores- Medical Application of
Biotechnology- Training in Road- Building in Desert Environment-
Technological Progress in Food Production in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions-
Industrial and Technological Intellectual Property Transfer- Science
Curricula and Managing Technology- Magnetic and Conducting Materials-
Technology of Foundries- Development of Off- shore Oil Prospecting.
Study Grants Program: in the fields of Medicine, Engineering
and Dentistry, Pharmacy, Nursing, Veterinary Sciences,
Agriculture and Computer Sciences for Students from LDC's and
Muslim minorities in non-Muslim Countries.
Grants for Top- Ranking Students: began in 1991/1992 to
encourage post-graduate and advanced studies, included 149
students from 38 countries for post-doctorate studies and 23
students were awarded the Ph.D. degrees.
In Support of Biotechnology:
1 - Application of biotechnology to raise the crop production
through breeding aiming at raising the resistance of plants to pests
and diseases, aridity and salinity, selecting the following crops to
being with:
Cotton for the Middle East, Eastern and Southern Asia.
Legumes for all Member Countries.
Sorghum and Millet for African Countries.
Rice for the Far East and Southern Asia.
2- Raising Animal Production through biotechnical applications
and other suitable technologies, viz. embryo transfer technology.
3- Application of biotechnology in plant breeding and aquatic
4- Stressing the benefits of biotechnology both on the experimental
or industrial levels, viz. transforming agricultural agro-industrial
wastes into nutrients feed, fuel and fertilizers.
5- Supporting the commercial utilisation of tissue culture and
vaccine production.
The 1DB approved a million dollars to fund a number of
projects to boost biotechnology in member countries (5 projects
approved already by COMSTECH). The bank funded several
workshops in collaboration with COMSTECH in support of the
Inter-Islamic Network for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology
(INOGE), viz.
Biotechnology for Development, Production of Transgenic Plants in the
Islamic Countries. Biosafety and Bioethics in Handling and Release of
Genetically Modified Organisms; Intellectual Proprietary Rights to
Protect Researches and Products of Manipulation and Biofertilizers and
their Role in Sustainable Agriculture. Supporting Science and
Technology Biosaline Agriculture
The Bank funded a regional research centre in the Emirates to serve the
field application of biosaline agriculture for the benefit of member
1.5- Islamic Education, Science and Culture Organisation
It was established in May 1982 as a Specialised Inter-Governmental
Specialised Institution to the Organisation of Islamic Conference and
striving to foster co-operation between its member countries in the field
of education, science and culture and strengthening its capabilities in
confronting the present-day challenges it faces within the frame-work of
the noble values of Islam and his ever-lasting ideals.
Its Principal Objectives are:
- Stressing the teaching of Arabic Language, abolishing illiteracy,
educating the elderly and grown-ups, preparing educational plans for
countries that lack such plans.
- Introducing contemporary education programs such as using
computers and educational researches and developing its services.
- Stressing Islamic literacy, preserving it and correcting the existing
falsehoods around them.
- Strengthening the Islamic Organisations working in the field.
ISESCO was authorised through COMSTECH to organise and hold the
founding meeting of the Association of Universities in the Islamic
Countries, Rabat, Morocco in 1987. However, the Association has not yet
achieved its full working structure.
ISESCO supports the various aspects of Science and Technology
through the following 6 axes.
1- Development of Curricula (pre-University, University; Scientific
and Technical Education) and Teaching Aids, Laboratories, Scientific
Equipment and maintenance, data collection, handling, storage and
2- Supporting scientific research, enhancing contacts between
scientists through grants, on-going participatory projects, grants to
attend conferences, holding symposia and meetings, providing
spare- parts to valuable equipment-Networking between
Academies, Universities, Research Institutions and NGOs.
3- Manpower development through grants and/ or fellowships for
University and post-graduate researches to develop professional capabilities
of scientists and technologists.
4- Supporting Muslim minority groups in non-Islamic countries through
provision of study grants either at Home or Abroad.
5- Environment Protection and Conservation of Natural Resources.
6- Strengthening Public Awareness of Science and Technology in relation to
the society through popularisation of sciences, ethical values of scientific
and technological developments.
ISESCO established a data bank at Rabat (BIDI) to serve the following
- Science and Technology- Education and up-bringing systems.
- Culture and Islamic Literacy-Islamic Heritage (Fiqh).
- Communication and relationship systems.
- General Information and Statistics.
ISESCO's science programmes in its 3 - year action plan (1998- 2000)
embody the following axes:
1 - Curricula and teaching aids for scientific and technological education.
2- Scientific equipment.
3- Scientific and Technical Manpower.
4- Research and publishing in science and technology.
5- Co-operation and co-ordination in the field of scientific and technological
6- Scientific Research Centers, Universities and the production sector. 7-
Popularisation of Science and Technology.
8- Technology in the Service of Development.
9- Water and Fishery Resources in the Muslim World.
10- Ethical Issues in the field of Science and Technology.
11- Humanities and Social Development.
ISESCO also prepared the implementation document of the Strategy for
Development of Science and Technology in the Islamic Countries and
brought it before the Co-ordinating Meeting of the Ministers of Science
and Higher Education at Budapest in June 1999 for their comments and
amendments so that the amended final document might be approved by
the forthcoming 1st Conference of Ministers of Higher Education and
Scientific Research in Islamic Countries sometime late this year.
1.6- The Islamic Institute of Technology (IIT) (Formerly: The
Islamic Centre for Training, Vocational Training and Research
The Institute was established by the decision of the Council of Foreign
Ministers of the OIC member Countries in May 1977 at Dhaka in order to
train the huge manpower resources available in the Islamic Countries
through several Study curricula and researches to meet their needs in
industrial and socio-economic development.
The Institute accomplished all its facilities by 1985 and delivered
13 study programs up till now. It is recognised by UN agencies and offers
its services in the fields of mechanical, chemical, electrical and electronic
technologies acquiring technical and Professional talents and undertakes
combined research in the fields of its competence. Thus, the Institute
includes lecture theatres, teaching rooms, work shops and laboratories
(29), the Library, Computer facility, Cafeteria and Student Dormitories,
the Social Centre, Mosque and Conference Hall in addition to the
Administration Building, what really places it on international level
compared to similar institutes.
Recent addition of the Institute include an Energy Centre, Environment
Centre, Services, Consultancies and Extension Department and another
Dept. for Research and Publications. A slight improvement in the financial
state of the Institute became noticeable in the past 2 years as a result of
setting the over- dues from some member Countries and availability of
some extra cash donations from certain other.
Member Countries nominate the teaching staff and faculty members-
fluency in English is a must before recruitment.
During the Academic year 1998 /1999, 448 students (representing 19
countries) were enrolled. Enrollment of Muslim students from non-
Moslem Countries is always welcome provided they are nominated
by their countries.
Students are distributed among the following Academic Programs:
1- An integrated four year engineering course for the B. Sc. in
Engineering (since 1996 /1997). Mechanical, Electrical, Computer
Science and/ or Information Technology. (Students pay reasonable
fees for this course).
2- High Diploma in Engineering (3 year Course).
3- M. S. in Technical Education (1 year Course).
4- Post-graduate Diploma in Technical/ Professional Education.
(Students receive grants to study Courses 2-4 above).
The plan for developing curricula teaching Chemical Engineering
Courses, inaugurating a Civil Engineering, Environmental
Engineering Departments and getting ready for establishing post-
graduate Engineering studies.
1.7- The Ministerial Standing Committee for Commercial
and Economic Co-operation (COMCEC):
The Committee supports economic aspects of the activities of
science and technology. (Its members are the concerned Ministers of
Trade, Finance and Economy in OIC member countries.)
The Committee's work is based on data and information provided
by the Statistical, Economic, Social Research and Training Centre for
Countries (SESRTCIC) in Ankara, Turkey.
Unfortunately, no coordination takes place between both
COMCEC and COMSTECH in spite of their overlapping fields of
2- The Islamic International Forum for Science, Technology
and Human Resource Development (IIFTIHAR).
It is a co-operative Institution stationed in Jakarta, Indonesia.
- To encourage co-operation for the development of science,
technology and human resources in Muslim communities throughout
the world.
- Provide the Muslim intellectuals and professionals with an opportunity
to exchange ideas, views, experience and expertise.
- To promote co-operation in the research and
development of science and technology according to the
principal teachings of Qur'an and Sunnah.
Open to all Muslim intellectuals and organisations involved in
the sectors of science and technology and the development of
human resources.
The President of the forum is elected by the General Assembly
for 5 years. He is assisted by 6 Vice-Presidents from: Saudi
Arabia, India, Indonesia, USA, Nigeria and Turkey.
The General Assembly:
It is the supreme authority of the forum. Its Chairman is elected
by the Assembly as President of the Forum for a 5 - year term.
The Executive Council:
Twenty five members; the President, Vice-President and the
a- Permanent members (6):
The Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the International
Institute for Islamic Thought (USA)- Rabita'h- Al-A'lam Al-
Islamy (Saudi Arabia)- Hay'a't Al-I'j'az Al-Islamy (Saudi Arabia),
International Federation of Arabic and Islamic Schools (Saudi
Arabia) and the Muslim Intellectual Society of Indonesia
b- Members (12+5):
Kuwait, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, UAE, Malaysia, Brunei Darus-
Salam, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iran, Senegal, Tanzania, and
Germany, France, UK, Canada and Australia.
II- Islamic Non-Governmental Science and Technology
a. Association of Islamic Universities (AIU)
Abiding by the Islamic principles and dispersing Islamic values
and encouraging Muslims to uphold it through achieving the
a) Upgrading the Islamic curricula and the science of Arabic
Language in all member institutions in particular and in all
institutions concerned with its teaching in general.
b) Stressing Arabic Language as a teaching medium in all
universities in Islamic Countries and striving to spread it wide.
c) Enhancing Co-operation between university and higher
education organisations concerned with Islamic and Arabic
studies especially as regards the plans, curricula, exams, as well
as material and human capabilities. The degrees they offer are all
of equal standard.
d) Encouraging scientific research that takes up such a
responsibility, supporting it and co-ordinating them.
e) Establish an Information Centre where all the data on
University and higher education is stored in addition to data on
staff members, students, scientific researches and all studies,
researches and documents concerning Islam and Muslims so that
this Centre would provide a resourceful source for researchers and
science students.
f) Facilitating the exchange of staff members and students,
developing cooperation between Islamic Universities to pool
human and material capabilities.
g) Providing grants to students to study at member
Universities, especially students from Islamic minorities.
Extending collaboration among the universities in that respect,
collaborating with the various Islamic authorities and
institutions to develop this scheme.
h) Supporting Islamic institutions in the field of Da'wa,
literacy and information as well as continuous learning
establishments in the field of Islamic and Arabic Studies.
i) Developing contacts between the Association and their
university and Cultural institutions both on the regional and
global levels especially in regions that lack these institutions.
Open to all universities and higher education institutions offering
studies in Arabic and Islamic Sciences and also scientific research
institutions working in the same fields.
Its Hierarchy is 3 - fold: The General Assembly, Executive Council and
General Secretariat. (Headquarters at Sheikh Saleh Centre- University
of Al-Azhar, Cairo).
General Assembly:
The supreme authority of the association to prepare the plans of
its general policies, evaluate them and follow-up on their
implementation, supervises all its subordinate organisations and its
member are the representatives of the various member
The Executive Council:
The Executive authority of the Association responsible before the
General Assembly to implement and supervise its activities in
between 2 successive sessions of the General Assembly; formed of
the President of the Association plus 14 members selected from
members of the General Assembly for 4 renewable years.
It is the administrative executive organ of the association
responsible for implementing its duties stipulated in the statutes and
byelaws of the Association headed by the Secretary General elected
by the General Assembly on nomination by the President for 4 years
b. The Commission of Science and Technology for Sustainable
Development in the South (COMSATS):
It is a non-governmental international organisation established in
1994 after the proposal of the Late Prof. Abdus Salam, the Noble
Prize Laureate in Physics and Chairman of the Third World
Academy of Sciences (TWAS) at Trieste, Italy, with its head
quarters in Pakistan.
1- To sensitize the Countries of the South to the Centrality of
science and technology in the development process; to the adequate
allocation for research and development and the integration of
science and technology in the national and regional development
2- To support the establishment of a Network of International
Science and Technology Centers for sustainable development in the
3- To support other major initiatives designed to promote
indigenous capacity in science and technology for science-led
sustainable development and to help mobilise long-term financial
support from international donor agencies and from government
institutions in the North and South to supplement the financing of
international scientific projects in the South.
4- To provide leadership and support for major North-South
and South Co-operative schemes in education, training and
research, viz. to set up scholarships program for research at
centres of excellence in the South.
5- To support the relevant programs and initiatives of major
scientific organisations working for the development and
promotion of science and technology in the South.
The main source of funding from member contributions,
income from the various sources and donations from different
sources. However, Pakistan provides the annual funding to
meet the running operational expenses of the secretariat.
Pakistan also contributed a million US to the Technical
Assistance Fund which is a trust fund stipulated for financing
COMSATS activities in the member states. Membership:
The focal points selected in member countries are mostly
the State or Government bodies and/ or universities
responsible for S&T resource management and research
development selected to ensure that the co-operation avenues
among the network member are properly explored with
support of their respective governments viz. Bangladesh,
China, Colombia, Egypt, Ghana, Iran, Jamaica, Jordan,
Kazakhistan, North Korea, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal,
Srilanka, Syria, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
Achievements/ Projects:
- In the Field of Information:
Application and utilization of information technology
(COMSATS Internet Services, CIS), Scientific and
Technological Information Centre (COMSATS Institute of
Information Technology, CIIT). The latter established in HEJ
Research Institute of Chemistry in Karachi and National Institute
of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE) in Faisalabad
to host most of the data bases in Research and Development in the
- Publications:
Information Technology Magazine; Science Vision (an
international quarterly journal published since 1995 and
circulated to more than 20 countries).
- Human Resource Development Programs in Education
and Professional Training:
* Student Exchange Program at both Chemistry at HEJ
Research institute of Chemistry, Karachi and Meterology at
the International Centre for Climate and Environmental
Sciences (ICCES) at Beijing.
* Workshops/ Seminars 6 workshops, viz. Numerical
Weather Prediction at ICCES Institute at Beijing, Maintenance
of Analytical Instruments at Kumasi, Ghana; Geo-Chemical
Mapping, Kingston, Jamaica; Mathematical Modeling at
Cairo, Applications of Laser Technology, in Syria and Basic
Spectroscopic Techniques in Pakistan.
* Professional Training Program where specialised training
is offered in laser research technology, glassblowing,
numerical weather prediction.
* Distance learning Program
- Experts/ Scholars Exchange: Scientists of developing
World engaged for tenured academic/ research activity in
various fields of science and technology.
- Sustained Efforts to Check the Out-flow of Intellects
COMSATS Secretariat Award COMSATS supported
Khwarazmi's International award. It began a program of its
own. Nominations of reputable renowned scientists are called
for from the respective countries to the International
Evaluation and Refereeing Committee before the final
nomination is declared.
- Production Sector Development/ Industry Linkage:
- Technical Collaboration: between member states in transfer of
technology, experiment design, reference data and other details.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed with the
National University of Science and Technology (NUST) to
promote solar and other renewable energy technologies. NUST
will provide scholarships for the students from member countries.
- Technology Exchange Programs:
Initiate Chinese Spark Program to develop rural economy through
technological application as with the possibility to generate joint
ventures between member states (COMSATS Expo-Chinese
* Technology Transfer and joint-venture encouragement
e.g. with the help of China to transfer to other South Asian
Countries in getting the numerical weather prediction
model, developed, tested and applied; Chinese technology
in agriculture and renewable energy sources; solar, thermal,
biogas, windmill and micro-hydle with UNESCO's support.
- Research and Development, Contract Research
Selection of innovators, provide them with finance to
produce the proto-type that can be commercialised later on.
Contracts are awarded to the projects with commercial
value; tissue culture- based agriculture, development
prototype dobby development in textile industry, aerial
mapping for geographical projects in difficult terrain.
Applications of Science and technology
COMSATS Internet Services' promotion of mathematical
models' development, their application and use to solve real
problems encountered in the field, viz. to solve the gas supply
problems in rural areas, of South Biogas plants installed with the
help of local inhabitants- Solar Thermal Energy projects
promoted to make use of alternative source of energy.
- Network Management
A suitable frame-work for assessment and management of science and
technology focal points in member countries. Networking helps
upgrading capabilities and contacts with counterparts in the developed
- International Co-operation:
Explores avenues of agreement with Distance Learning Projects in
French Language first to eradicate illiteracy and as a show-case for
the opportunities France has to offer. Obtains technical and financial
support from Developed World and international agencies. UNESCO
also supports 1MW solar thermal plant project.

1-Brochures of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC).
2- Resolution of the Islamic Summit Conference.
3- Documents of the 6th General Assembly Meeting of
COMSTECH Islamabad, Pakistan in September 1993.
- Report of the Islamic Foundation for Science, Technology
and Development (IFSTAD), Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
4- Documents of the 9th General Assembly Meeting of
COMSTECH Islamabad, Pakistan in November 1999.
a- Programme and Action Plan of COMSTECH during
the biennium 2000/2001 at Islamabad.
b- Report of the Islamic Academy of Sciences (IAS)
Amman. Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
c- Report of Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Jeddah.
d- Report of the Islamic Education Science and Culture
organisation (ISESCO), Rabat Morocco.
e- Report of the Islamic Institute for Technology (IIT),
Dhaka, Bangladesh.
5- Programme and Action Plan (COMCEC) by the
Scientific, Economic Research and Training Centre at
Ankara Turkey.
6- The Islamic International Forum for Science Technology
and Human Resources Development (IIFTIHAR) Home
Page on Internet: www.iiftihar.or.id.
7- Statutes of the Islamic Association of Universities (IAU)
Secretariat at Al-Azhar Univ., Cairo, Egypt.
8- Commission of Science and Technology for Sustainable
Development in the South (COMSATS) Home Page on
Internet: info@comsats.net.pk.

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