Armenia, Sweden mull perspectives of cooperation in high-tech

High-Tech Industry Minister Hakob Arshakyan received the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Sweden Mr. Svensson Patrik and Izabella Eriksson, Deputy Head of Mission, Counsellor in charge of Development Cooperation.

Minister Arshakyan welcomed Ambassador Svensson and wished him success during the diplomatic mission. He mentioned that the Armenian side highly appreciates the humanitarian aid received from Kingdom of Sweden after the war.

The Minister emphasized the importance of the agreement on the development of cooperation between Sweden and , signed in 2019 by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Armenia, Zohrab Mnatsakanyan and the Director-General of Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), Carin Jämtin.

‘‘The signing of the agreement is a new chapter in Armenian-Swedish relations and within its framework we need to develop our relations in many spheres’’ said Arshakyan.

Speaking about the main fields of activities of the Ministry, Hakob Arshakyan mentioned that Armenia’s high-tech industry had impressive growth even in 2020, which was a hard year for the economy. This shows that Armenian high-tech industry not only has good growth potential, but also demonstrates tangible results. This is evidenced by the presence of branches of world high-tech companies operating in Armenia, such as ‘‘Ericsson’’ and other companies.

The Minister suggested the Ambassador to draw the attention of Swedish companies to the idea of opening branches in Armenia, as well as the possibility of establishing a Tumo Center for Creative Technologies in Stockholm, and localization of other successful technological educational programs there. Ambassador Svensson, who was appointed in September, positively assessed the growth in the high-tech sector, noting that it also demonstrates the level of certain environment and favorable conditions.

The Ambassador stressed that the Swedish high-tech industry had undergone considerable development and they are happy to share their experience not only in terms of creating an enabling environment for company development, but also in terms of education, science and their connections to business.

Hakob Arshakyan told the Ambassador that the Armenian side is particularly interested in cooperation within educational and scientific programs in different formats: on the level of universities, scientific institutions and policy development.

In turn, the Ambassador replied that there are grants for Armenian students at Swedish universities of technology, and grants may be increased in the future.

The Ambassador also expressed interest in Armenia’s digital agenda. Armenia’s five-year digitalization strategy has already been developed and submitted to the government for approval, now it is in the final stages of discussion.

The directions and possibilities of cooperation and development in the sphere of incubators and start-ups was discussed.

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