Checkmate inflow of foreign tech, minister directs NOTAP

Mohammed Abdullahi, the Minister of State, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, has directed the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) to checkmate the inflow of foreign technology into the country.

He gave the directive when he paid a visit to NOTAP headquarters in Abuja, observing that if the agency did not checkmate inflow of foreign technology, the country would become a dumping ground for all sorts of technology.

He said the role of NOTAP in the Nigerian economy could not be overemphasised and urged the agency to handle importation of foreign technology with professionalism.

“You should check properly before approving any technology coming into the country and make sure you don’t approve any technology that will not improve our local content,’’ he said.

Dr. Mohammed Bello, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, said an office such as NOTAP needed a modern office space to discharge its official duties.

“Your duties are innovative in nature and you need the best of space to be able to link up with other stakeholders in order to discharge your duties.

“It is also needed so as to ease the discharge of your duties and promote foreign and local investments in technology,’’ he said.

Dr. DanAzumi Ibrahim, the Director General of NOTAP, thanked the minister for the visit to get acquainted with its functions.

He said that NOTAP, in collaboration with the World Intellectual Property Organisation, had established more than 54 technology transfer offices across the country to encourage the patenting and development of indigenous technologies.

According to him, NOTAP has been able to save N270 billion that could have gone on capital flight in the last seven years.

He said the agency achieved the feat by stopping huge licensing fees paid in importing foreign technology and thereby promoting industrialisation.

“Our mandate is to take care of the legal, economic and technical aspects of any technology transfer agreements between our innovators and local.

“Before registration of any technology, we embark on a pre-registration of visit to determine the nature and economic importance of such innovation and by so doing; we have been able to reduce capital flight,’’ he said.

He noted that NOTAP operations were 98 per cent automated unlike the past where registrations and applications were done manually.(NAN)