Iran, Armenia seeking enhanced technological co-op

January 27, 2021 - 17:50

TEHRAN – Iranian Vice-President for Science and Technology, Sourena Sattari, met with Armenian Economy Minister Vahan Kerobyan in Tehran on Wednesday to discuss ways to expand technological cooperation.

Praising Iran's scientific and technological achievements, Kerobyan expressed readiness to use Iranian expertise in technology and stated that Armenia also serves Iran in this area.

“We strongly agree with the implementation of a project in the field of creating a joint technology park between Iran and Armenia as soon as possible and the formation of a team to develop bilateral cooperation,” he highlighted.

He went on to say that Armenia had the largest number of scientists before the collapse of the Soviet Union, but after the collapse, most of them were scattered across the world, even now, our scientists are either very old or very young, ISNA reported on Wednesday.

“So, we seek a program to bring elites and educated people back from all over the world, which brings the country economic prosperity,” he stated, adding, the program implemented in Iran can be used in Armenia.

Sattari, for his part, referred to the plan on the return of Iranian elites from the top 100 universities in the world, saying that through the national model, first the facilities are provided for their return, by creating technology parks, innovation centers, and factories.

Pointing out that the initial idea was taken from a Chinese model, he stated that the plan was able to bring back 2,000 Iranian students from the top 100 universities in the world over a three-year period, amounting to 600 people a year.

Given that this model is closer to the culture of Armenia, it is certainly more applicable compared to European and American models, he noted, expressing readiness to provide them with the Iranian model.

Iran owns largest startups in the region

Iran has 4 million students with high knowledge capacity so that we rely on them to move toward a knowledge-based economy, Sattari said.

Expressing that the formation of technology and innovation ecosystem is the most important and basic need for the realization of the knowledge-based economy, he said that apart from educated people, universities, innovation centers, innovation factories, technology parks, etc. are the main components of this ecosystem.

There are currently 6,000 knowledge-based companies operating in Iran, and last year they generated a revenue of about $12 billion, he highlighted.

He emphasized that Iran has the largest startups in the region in the field of information and communication technology, biotechnology, nanotechnology, stem cells, etc., and about 50 technology parks have been formed throughout Iran.

Noting that 98 percent of the medicine needed in the country is produced domestically, he said that our expert manpower is able to meet domestic needs, so we can help Armenia in the development of new technologies.

Many Armenian scientists and academics study in Iranian universities, he also said.

Noting that Iran is ready to share all its experiences with Armenia, Sattari emphasized the need to expand cooperation in the field of joint technology parks and student exchange.

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