By Faranak Bakhtiari

Employment development through nanotechnology

May 22, 2022 - 16:55

TEHRAN – Unemployment of university graduates is one of the most important social issues in the country, which can be overcome with the help of knowledge-based nanotechnology companies.

The issue of employment is one of the most basic needs of every society so increasing employment and reducing unemployment are considered the main indicators of development.

Given the vital role of a specialized and educated workforce in the process of economic, social, and cultural development, and also considering that a huge amount of budget is spent annually on training costs, if the specialized and educated workforce is not used in jobs related to their fields of study, on the one hand, we have wasted costs and on the other hand, we have provided the emergence of frictional unemployment and migration in the society.

The Nanotechnology Innovation Council has started cooperation with the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labor, and Social Welfare to create employment by using the power of knowledge-based companies in this field to eliminate unemployment and prevent the migration of graduates.

Following this agreement, nano-companies that have the potential to produce nano-industrial and semi-industrial products will be supported.

Nanotech products are being produced and marketed in more than 15 industrial fields based on domestic technologies and are being exported to 49 countries. Saeed Sarkar, the secretary of the Nanotechnology Innovation Council, said that one of the reasons and weaknesses that lead to the emigration of the elites is that these people do not find jobs that fit their specialty in the country so they choose migration.

Referring to two types of elite migration, he explained that one is geographical migration in which the elites cannot find jobs; and some people have graduated but are engaged in fields other than their own specialization and occupations, which is also a cause of migration.

In the past, unfortunately, the employment was thought to be in charge of labor or rural employment, and as a result, the quantity of employment was the priority, not the quality, he lamented.

Fortunately, the ministry of labor now has a new approach to job creation, which is to support specialized employment, to consider both the quantity and quality of employment, he noted.

With the cooperation of the Ministry, we intend to create conditions by granting low-interest loans that companies can be the source of creating specialized employment by developing their work, creativity, and innovation, he said, expressing hope to extend this model to other areas of technology.

There are 350 companies that have products in the market and their products are commercialized, in the country, so these firms are eligible to receive loans to create specialized employment, however, startup companies, research, and development companies that have a nano product in the path of production and commercialization are not included, he added.

One of the industries that have experienced good growth in Iran in recent years, proving the country’s scientific development, is the nanotechnology industry, a subject area that has brought Iran to the world’s fourth place.

Currently, nanotech products are produced and marketed in more than 15 industrial fields based on domestic technologies and are being exported to 49 countries from five continents.

Over the current year (ending March 20, 2023), the total sale of Iranian nanoproducts has been equal to 115 trillion rials (nearly $425 million).

The expansion of nanotechnology export programs in recent years and the establishment of bases for exporting nanoproducts to China, India, Indonesia, Syria, Turkey, and Iraq have provided the opportunity for the entry of Iranian nanotechnology goods, and equipment, and services into global markets.

Some 42 percent of the products in this field are related to construction, more than 17 percent to the field of oil, gas, and petrochemicals, 13 percent to the field of automobiles, and over 10 percent to the field of optoelectronic.

Some 270 companies are active in the nanotechnology field and it is predicted that their revenue will reach up to 80 trillion rials (nearly $310 million), Vice President for Science and Technology, Sourena Sattari, announced.

Iran improves in nanotechnology

Iran’s ranking in nanotechnology articles citation in 2019 has significantly improved compared to 2018, as it moved 26 levels higher, according to the StatNano’s statistics collected from the WoS database.

Based on a report Nanotechnology Publications report, Iran ranked 38 worldwide for the average number of times the nano-articles have been cited in the Journal Citation Reports in 2019, while in 2018, it was placed 64.
Iran ranked 4th for the highest number of nano-article publications.

Knowledge-based ecosystem

Today, the country's knowledge-based ecosystem accounts for more than 3 percent of GDP. And the figure is projected to reach 5 percent, however, the main goal is to step toward a 10 percent share in GDP, Sattari told Fars on February 13.

The share of knowledge-based companies in the country's economy has exceeded 9 quadrillion rials (about $34 billion), and since 2019, it has experienced a growth of more than 450 percent, he stated.

There are currently 6,263 knowledge-based companies operating in the country, offering advanced products and services in various fields of technology to domestic and foreign markets, and some of them have entered international markets, Siavash Maleki, deputy head of the Fund, stated.

The fields of aircraft maintenance, steel, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, oil, and gas are among the sectors that researchers in technology companies have engaged in, leading to import reduction.


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