Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) is eyeing to enhance the startup ecosystem, emerging technology, and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education under the Budget 2024.

Minister Chang Lih Kang said those are among the area that has been proposed to be included in the budget, but he did not reveal any specific details as it is still under the purview of the Finance Ministry to be finalised.

“Basically, there are a few areas that we want to strengthen with the first being the startup ecosystem, we hope we could have more funding.

“...and there are other areas such as emerging technology that we hope can help our country in developing a cutting-edge, start-of-the-art technology. Another big focus area is STEM education where we want to inculcate STEM education,” he said after officiation at the Malaysian Technology Development Corporation (MTDC) Technology Conference and Exhibition here today.

Chang is also hopeful that the budget will include an allocation to ensure the government targets to have a total of 1.5 million electric vehicles (EVs) in the country by 2040 is feasible.

“Currently, it is still very low I don't have a figure but towards the end of the year we will get the figure, but it’s low. Our target is by 2025 we can have 10,000 charging stations. So, judging from the numbers of charging stations, you know the adoption levels are very low,” he said.

Budget 2024 is expected to be tabled in Parliament on Oct 13.

On another development regarding the release of treated radioactive water from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan into the Pacific Ocean, he said the government is monitoring the situation closely and, as of now. there are no abnormalities in terms of radioactive levels in the domestic seawater.

He also said the ministry will also look into setting up a platform for the public to monitor the data openly so as to address concerns about Japan's decisions.

“The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) data is open and it's on their website but ours is not yet (ready). I need to discuss with the team first but we will be sharing it (data) with other ASEAN countries,” he said.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency