Finland, Egypt discuss building innovation technical centre for startups

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Finland and Egypt are in the process of developing an executive roadmap that includes building a technical centre for innovation sponsoring Finnish and Egyptian startups.

Deputy head of the Permanent Mission of Finland to Egypt, Petri Hautaniemi alongside representative of Nokia have met Monday in Cairo with Egyptian Minister of Communications Yasser El-Kady to discuss activating the strategic cooperation between the two countries in fields of technological innovation and entrepreneurship.

The meeting was attended by Egypt’s Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA) chief executive Asmaa Hosni and Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre (TIEC) Chairman Hossam Osman.

The meeting emphasised the Egyptian-Finnish cooperation in the ICT field, witnessing intensive talks since 2013 through the exchange of visits and high-level meetings between officials of the Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, ITIDA with the Finnish side, represented by the Embassy of Finland, and Nokia. Those meetings aimed to exchange experiences and views in the ICT field especially the establishment of a centre for innovation in order to enable technological solutions in various sectors, including aquaculture.

El-Kady ascertained that Egypt is currently implementing a set of programmes to support technological innovation, including the fields of electronics industries, mobile applications, and electronic games. He stated that these programmes support entrepreneurs to provide a supportive technological environment and opportunities, embrace, attract, and promote investors at the national and international levels and protect the property intellectual rights of their innovations.

Egyptian minister pointed out that his country seeks to build a base of potential calibres in the areas required by the labor market, such as artificial intelligence techniques, big data analysis, and Internet of Things (IoT), to serve different sectors such as health, education, industry, and commerce.

Hautaniemi said that Egypt has great opportunities for economic growth through supporting entrepreneurs in the technological fields, highlighting the technical potentials of the Egyptian youth. He also highlighted the wish of both countries to cooperate in the field of transferring technological knowledge and experience especially those of Finland in this area. The Finnish official also expressed the interest of Finland, represented by the government and ICT startups, in having presence in markets outside Europe, and making Egypt a gateway to the Arab region and Africa.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed how Finland can become Egypt’s gateway to Europe in the field of marketing creativity and innovation, in collaboration with Nokia. This includes involving startups, operating in the software and electronics manufacturing, in projects and optimising the experiences of young innovators in the two countries.

They also discussed holding a world Forum in Egypt over the next year for innovators and startups in the Arab region, to which investors from around the world are to be invited.

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