Opening Remarks of President of the Republic of Indonesia at the Inauguration of the 2021 National Work Meeting of the Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology on the Reinforcement of Technology Innovation Ecosystem on Monday, 8 March 2021 at the State Palace, Jakarta
Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,
May peace be upon us all,
Greetings of Virtue.
Distinguished Ministers of the Indonesia Onward Cabinet,
Distinguished Head of the Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology (BPPT),
Distinguished National Work Meeting attendees,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
We must be grateful for God’s endowment in the form of abundant natural resources. We must preserve and utilize it wisely for public welfare, for our welfare.
However, without technological mastery and utilization, the endowment will not bring optimal benefits for the people.
In fact, we must shift from a commodity-based economy to an economy based on innovation and technology.
We must increase our capacity as technology producers.
We must improve the national technological sovereignty.
Indonesian researchers, innovators, and manufacturers must join hands to develop future technology. Technology based on the fourth Industrial Revolution, environmentally-friendly green technology. Technology that makes our people prosper.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
There are several important things that the BPPT must carry out to be the extraordinary brain of economic recovery.
First, the BPPT must search for for innovation and technology to develop and apply. I am confident that hundreds of thousands of researchers, thousands of government and private research and technology agencies, and millions of innovators in Indonesia must have many findings.
Perhaps, preliminary findings still need to be developed.
Perhaps, final findings are ready to be applied and manufactured by the industry.
Amid the pandemic, there are many innovations in the health sector, such as ventilators and respirators that are considerably useful for COVID-19 patients. There is a technology to screen COVID-19 patients, such as GeNose that is very affordable, very easy to use, and very fast. It has been installed in all of our train stations and several important crowded locations with high interaction and mobility.
There is also RI-GHA rapid diagnostic test that can detect COVID-19 antibodies and many more that I cannot name one by one.
Innovations in other fields, especially in the food and energy sector, can also be utilized to enhance the efficiency of MSMEs, facilitate synergy between small and large businesses, and improve the quality of life in the population at large.
Second, the BPPT must become an agency for advanced technology acquisition from anywhere. Once again, the BPPT must be an agency for advanced technology acquisition from anywhere. Technology currently develops rapidly and the technology we need to recover the national economy may not have been produced here in Indonesia. Therefore, the strategy of technology acquisition is the key to accelerate our economic development.
The BPPT must prepare a strategy to acquire foreign technology that is useful and able to be implemented immediately. And we must begin to not only purchase turnkey technology. This is crucial. We often receive only the key, receive the end product. As a result, for decades we cannot create the technology. Hence, do not buy just the machine, but also all the experts.
We must cooperate to produce technology in Indonesia. Bear in mind that we must cooperate to produce technology in Indonesia, which involves Indonesian technologists, so there are knowledge and experience transfer.
This order is not only for the BPPT, but also for all members of the Cabinet, especially Coordinating Ministers (Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Investment Affairs and Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs), Minister of Trade, Minister of Industry, Minister of State-Owned Enterprises, and Head of the Investment Coordinating Board.
With the power of a giant market, a huge purchasing power, and abundant natural resources, we have strong leverage. Think carefully of clever methods to acquire technology at an affordable price.
Third, the BPPT must be the center for Indonesia’s technological intelligence. Once again, the BPPT must be the center for Indonesia’s technological intelligence. We are currently in the era of Artificial Intelligence (AI) war. The competition to master AI is similar to the space war in the Cold War era. We are on the chase. And to fight the AI war, we currently need the BPPT to produce its own technology.
BPPT must synergize talents in the diaspora, researchers at universities, technology start-ups, and young people who are very militant. It must build the main AI machine that can facilitate cooperation between innovators and researchers, facilitate computer intelligence and human intelligence to support unconventional and effective economic recovery.
It is my hope that the BPPT can be an extraordinary agency that continues to discover new methods, innovative and creative methods, that creates real work, that contributes to national advancement.
That concludes my speech on this auspicious occasion.
And by saying bismillahirrahmanirrahim, I hereby inaugurate the 2021 National Work Meeting of the Agency for the Assessment and Application of Technology this morning.
I thank you.
Wassalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh. (DH/MEP)