LAHORE                 -                The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry and Punjab Higher Education Commission have inked a memorandum of understanding to collectively work towards promoting higher education, research, training, industrial and academia linkages. LCCI President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh and Chairman PHEC Dr Fazal Ahmad Khalid signed the document on behalf of their respective institutions. LCCI Vice President Mian Zahid Jawaid Ahmad, former Vice President Faheem-ur-Rehman Saigal, Convener Standing Committee on Industry Academia Linkage Umer Saleem, LCCI Executive Committee members Wasif Yousaf, Haji Asif Saher, Naseem-ul-Ghani, Fiaz Haider, Zeeshan Sohail Malik were also present. The MoU is aimed at facilitating each other in joint research projects, access to research facilities, sharing of academic data, publications, information, student and academia exchange and other programs within the applicable legal framework including government policies. PHEC shall appoint a focal person in LCCI’s standing committee on Industry Academia Linkages and other relevant committees. Similarly the LCCI representatives will be taken on board while formulating the policies by PHEC. LCCI and PHEC will celebrate Industry Academia Linkage week every year in 1st week of April to bridge the gap between industry academia and develop the culture of research and innovation. The LCCI and PHEC will organize conferences, seminars, visits jointly or individually.

 Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said that concept of establishing connections between industry and the research oriented educational institutions has been gaining a lot of importance for the meaningful economic growth and prosperity. He said that government should upgrade faculties in institutions like PHEC and provide them with suitable funding for equipping the laboratories and libraries.

Dr Fazal Ahmed Khalid said that MoU would go a long way in strengthening industry-academia linkages. “We are living in an era where another industrial revolution is happening,” he said and added that strong industry-academia linkages could play important role in exports promotion and economic development of the country.