The South Korean government is planning to invest 514.1 billion won (US$447 million) in nanotechnology this year. At present, South Korea ranks third in the world in the number of patents held in this field.
Last year, 10 government agencies and 11 government-funded research institutes in the country invested a total of 518.1 billion won (US$450 million) in the field. For the past five years, 3,512 techniques in the field were turned into specific business models with an average annual growth rate of 40.1%. The investment to be made this year is divided into 429.8 billion won (US$373 million) in R&D, 35.5 billion won (US$30 million) in infrastructure and 49.3 billion won (US$42 million) in manpower training.
The government is going to focus on basic research and source technology development related to technological convergence. In addition, it is planning to launch a three-phase demonstration project covering nanobiotechnological efficacy evaluation and made up of the three stages of source technology development, efficacy evaluation and commercialization.
Multiple ministries such as the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning, the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy and the Ministry of Environment are to speed up the industrial use of the seven strategic items including nanoelectronic devices, IoT-based environmental and food-related nanosensors, energy-saving water treatment systems and functional nanofibers. At the same time, commercialization of promising technology such as graphene is to be accelerated as well.