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Strategic International Cooperative Program

Japan and Singapore signed MOU for Research Collaboration

Japan, 18 March 2009 - On 18th March 2009, with the endorsement of Japan's Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) and the support of Singapore's Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI), Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) signed an MOU to implement the "Strategic International Cooperative Program" (SICP) .

The SICP initiative aims to promote joint international research collaborations between Japan and Singapore by means of providing funding for research and workshops. Under this MOU, JST and A*STAR have mutually agreed to support research within the field of "Functional Applications in Physical Sciences". This field encompasses strategic research areas such as nanotechnology; materials, including applications for photonics and terahertz; and chemistry, including nanobiotechnology and bioelectronics.

Besides funding research, SICP also provides financial support for attachments and invitations of researchers and organizing workshops to facilitate exchange activities among the Japanese and Singaporean researchers. "We are delighted to tie up with JST," said Mr Lim Chuan Poh, Chairman of A*STAR. "This partnership will bring our ties with Japanese research institutes to a new level as it will pave the way for researchers in A*STAR to interact with the researchers from Japanese universities and public research institutes, and vice versa. I am confident that many new ideas and innovations will be spawned from these interactions. "

Since 2003, the Strategic International Cooperative Program has been promoted by JST to foster active research exchange between researchers from Japan and specific countries. Prior to this, JST has collaborated with 16 countries across Asia, Oceania, Africa and Europe within the framework of the SICP. Through this program, both JST and A*STAR will tap into the international network of collaboration under the SICP to accentuate its focus on fostering world-class scientific research.

"Today, with our wishes fulfilled, I am extremely pleased to launch into a new relationship with Singapore", said Prof. KITAZAWA Koichi, President of JST. "Since Singapore ranks as one of the top countries in the world in science and technology, it is extremely meaningful for Japan to have Singapore as its partner."

About Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST)

Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) aims to establish Japan as a nation built on the creativity of science and technology and innovation, as a core organization for implementing Japan's science and technology policy in line with the objectives of the Science and Technology Basic Plan. JST's mission is to promote science and technology in Japan by conducting a broad range of activities, including the following:

* Promotion of consistent research and development from basic research to commercialization with particular emphasis on the creation of new technological seeds
* Upgrading the infrastructure for the promotion of science and technology, including dissemination of scientific and technological information

For more information, please visit http://www.jst.go.jp/EN/index.html.

About Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

A*STAR is Singapore's lead agency for fostering world-class scientific research and talent for a vibrant knowledge-based Singapore. A*STAR actively nurtures public sector research and development in Biomedical Sciences, Physical Sciences and Engineering, with a particular focus on fields essential to Singapore's manufacturing industry and new growth industries. It oversees 22 research institutes, consortia and centres, and supports extramural research with the universities, hospital research centres and other local and international partners. At the heart of this knowledge intensive work is human capital. Top local and international scientific talent drive knowledge creation at A*STAR research institutes. The Agency also sends scholars for undergraduate, graduate and post-doctoral training in the best universities, a reflection of the high priority A*STAR places on nurturing the next generation of scientific talent.

For more information, visit http://www.a-star.edu.sg.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST)

Emi Kaneko (Ms.) / Saori Tsuchiya (Ms.) / Masashi Hara (Mr.)
Department of International Affairs
Japan Science and Technology Agency
5-3 Yonbancho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-8666 Japan
Tel. +81(0)3-5214-7375。。Fax. +81(0)3-5214-7379; E-mail:

Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

Joyce Chua (Ms.)
Assistant Head, Corporate Communications
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
DID: (65) 6826 6387; H/P: (65) 9369 1471

Jimmy Lim (Mr.)
SERC Corporate Communications Account Manager
Science and Engineering Institutes
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
DID: (65) 6419 1162; H/P: (65) 9008 9425

JST, an integrated organization of science and technology in Japan, establishes an infrastructure for the entire process from the creation of knowledge to the return to the society. For more information, visit http://www.jst.go.jp/EN/