October 18, Kathmandu: National Innovation Center (NIC) was inaugurated on the Tribhuwan University premises at Kirtipur in the capital on Friday. Established under the initiation of Mr.Mahabir Pun, a social activist, the center aims to help capitalize entrepreneurial ideas of youths, work in research and development activities and contribute to the national economy. Pun said the center, along with promoting entrepreneurship and innovation works in the country, will also give due priority to expanding internet services across rural parts of Nepal.
Amid a function held on the TU premises, Flemming Topsoe, a Danish professor inaugurated the center on the TU premises, Kirtipur. “The center has a plan to introduce a Research and Development (R&D) culture in Nepal, and help nurture and promote innovation-based ecosystems for socio-economic development by employing both grassroots (bottom-up) and top-down approaches,”-said the Chairman of the center.
Set up at the premises of Tribhuwan University with an investment of almost Rs 80 million, the center is currently working on 20 different projects. Pun, who is also the chairman of the center, said he was able to establish the center through donations and financial support from the public and some foreigners. Professor Flemming extended Rs 16 million grant assistance to set up the center.
Chairman Pun said that the center will manage financial resources by producing export quality mineral water from Himalayan springs, developing soft drinks from ginger and Himalayan herbs, and producing power from solar and bio-gas for sale, investing in tourism businesses, etc. NIC has also aimed at starting a software company to generate income for its sustainability, he said.
“We have a plan to promote innovation and entrepreneurship by encouraging the youths with ideas and vision to produce goods within the country and promote trade. At present, a total of 20 projects are being run by the center in various fields including bio-medical, agriculture, education, health, and drone, etc.
The NIC has now expedited preparations for producing fodder for poultry and fish in Chitwan while works for the promotion of tourism and development of agriculture are currently underway in different cities including Pokhara and Biratnagar.
“We don’t seek academic qualification among aspiring and innovate youths. Rather, any motivated youth with vision and a proper plan will be aided with necessary funds and technology,” Pun added. On the occasion, 82-year-old Professor Flemming was also honored.