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Balik Scientist Law Signed

DOST Secretary Dela Pena with principal authors of the Balik Scientist Law

Republic Act No. 11035, also known as an “Act Institutionalizing the Balik Scientist Program,” or Balik Scientist Law has been signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last June 15, 2018. This is the culmination of the efforts from the academe, government agencies and legislature in order to boost the number of scientists in the country.

Balik Scientists will have compensations that are tax-free and duty exemptions on importing equipment and materials. Also, travel expenses are covered and also a relocation benefits package.

Aside from direct benefits to the scientist, family assistance such as securing work for the spouse ad support for the children I preferred schools are offered. There is also monthly housing allowance and funding for the development of the facility or laboratory that the scientist may require.

“This law is a big help in encouraging Filipino scientists to return to the country and contribute to improving the nation and people’s lives. This law addresses the problem on the low number of scientists in the country so we can fare better with our neighboring countries in Asia who have more people working in research and development,” Senator Bam Aquino said. Senator Aquino was the principal sponsor of the bill in the Senate.

The law aims to address the dearth of Filipino scientists in the country. Space Technology, Bio-medicine, energy, artificial intelligence, electronics, health, biotechnology, agriculture, nanotechnology, information and communications technology and cybersecurity are among the priority fields for the Balik Scientists.

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