We encourage you to republish this article online and in print, it’s free under our creative commons attribution license, but please follow some simple guidelines:
  1. You have to credit our authors.
  2. You have to credit SciDev.Net — where possible include our logo with a link back to the original article.
  3. You can simply run the first few lines of the article and then add: “Read the full article on SciDev.Net” containing a link back to the original article.
  4. If you want to also take images published in this story you will need to confirm with the original source if you're licensed to use them.
  5. The easiest way to get the article on your site is to embed the code below.
For more information view our media page and republishing guidelines.

The full article is available here as HTML.

Press Ctrl-C to copy

For nearly a decade, Malaysia has been embracing research and development to stimulate its economic growth.

In 1996, the country launched its so-called Multimedia Super Corridor as a destination for information technology companies and high-tech research. In 2003, the government announced its BioValley project to attract biotechnology research and development projects. And last week it revealed its new, government-run Malaysian Biotech Corporation (see Malaysia to launch US$26 million biotech fund).

But does the real state of Malaysian biotechnology measure up to its ambition? In this article, CNETAsia editor Cordelia Lee says that so far, it hasn't.

The Multimedia Super Corridor, she says, was plagued with problems of bureaucracy and an emphasis on property development at the expense of funding and human resources. She argues that without significant changes, the drive for excellence in biotechnology might also stall.

The same obstacles remain, Lee notes: limited access to funding, a shortage of talent, wary investors and inadequate laws for protecting intellectual property. Competition from Singapore is also a difficult issue. 

Malaysia has a long way to go in biotechnology, she says, but there is no doubt over the government's commitment to this emerging industry.

Link to full CNETAsia article