The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr. SIMBI Wabote, has announced a $50 million Research and Development (R&D) Fund to be accessed by Nigerian developers and inventors at home or abroad from research stage through commercialization.Wabote told a news conference in Lagos on Tuesday that the process of obtaining funding for research is simple. “It is not a loan but a grant. To be able to access the grant, there are certain ground rules that you must go through. We have technology committee that would review your proposal.
“We have a research and development council which I chair in conjunction with other stakeholders in the oil and gas industry, especially those genuinely involved in research and development. So, if you go through the screening of those two layers, you are entitled to a fund. The idea behind it all, is to improve research and development in local content, especially research to commercialisation, and we want to be with you from your research stage to commercialisation,” Wabote said.
“We are not an organisation set up to share money to people. We must follow through end-to-end strategically, to achieve the desired goal. The idea behind this is to invest in a particular product line, and put such product into the market. The fund for research and development currently stands at $50 million,” he explained, adding that the amount is not limited to an applicant, but limited the problem you want to solve.
Wabote also announced that the second edition of the its Research and Development (R&D) Fair, scheduled for September 9, 2021 in Yenagoa, the capital of Bayelsa State, will bring together industry stakeholders, academia and researchers towards achieving a common agenda on R&D as a pillar for sustainable local content.
“I encourage interested members of the public and Nigerians in the Diaspora to log on to the link – http://ncdmb.gov.ng/rdfair2021/ to register and attend the important conference. I look forward to seeing you all,” he said.
Local media reports on Wednesday quoted Wabote as saying that some of the achievements recorded from the last edition of the fair in 2017 included “The establishment of Nigerian Content Research and Development Council with a mandate to advise the Board on matters relating to research and development in the oil and gas industry; development of R&D 10-year Strategic Road Map, which will be launched during the 2021 R&D Fair.
“Development of frameworks for supporting research breakthroughs to products for industry application, of which 20 Researchers are benefiting from the Board’s intervention.
“The inauguration of Technical Advisory Board on Nigerian content Research and Development Fund.
“Signing of the MoU to establish R&D Centers of Excellence in five universities across the country – Federal Universities of Technology in Minna, Akure and Owerri, Niger Delta University Amasoma and Modibbo Adama University of Technology Yola, is also part of its considerations, among others.”
The Executive Secretary also announced that the panelists lined up for the technical session to discuss ‘Legal Framework, Governance and Enforcement as R&D Success Pillars’, include vice chancellors of technical universities, director generals, as well as representatives drawn from Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN).
The NCDMB was established in April 2010 with the mandate to develop the capacity of the local supply chain for the effective and efficient service delivery in the oil and gas industry, promote value addition in Nigeria and the utilization of Nigerian made goods, services and manpower in the oil and gas activities as well as facilitate home grown technology and innovation through the nurturing of local research and development R&D capabilities.