The top executives of some 70 Iranian high-tech companies conferred with their Turkish counterparts on possible cooperation at a B2B meeting held in Istanbul on Wednesday.
The meeting, organized by the Science and Technology Department of the Iranian president’s office and funded by Iran’s National Innovation Fund, was also attended by Sorena Sattari, the Iranian Vice-President for Science and Technology.
The Iranian and Turkish businesspeople used the gathering, held at the conference hall of Elite World Istanbul Hotel from 10 am to 2 pm, to introduce their products and services and discuss possible investment and knowledge transfer.
Addressing the event, Sattari referred to “a great many of historical and cultural commonalities between Iran and Turkey”, and said the membership of both countries in regional treaties, and the meetings held annually or several times a year between President Hassan Rouhani of Iran and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey show the high level of the two countries’ political ties.
He went on to say that “according to our regional agreements with Turkey the level of our economic relations is supposed to rise to $30 billion a year, leaving a lot to be desired.”
He pointed to the delegation of Iranian companies attending the event, and said, “Sadly, because of the existing problems we could not have more than 80 companies in the meeting while more than 200 companies were interested.”
“Extraordinary events have taken place in the area of development of science and technology in Iran. Now we have a huge number of start-ups and knowledge-based companies, which is unique in the region, especially in the areas of ICT, biotechnology, nanotechnology, stem cells, medical equipment, and so on,” he added.
Sattari pointed out that “years of sanctions have made Iran expand its local technologies and we are producing 98% of our medicines by the means of our own technology. Now our companies seriously need to export, and in our view Turkey is the gate for the exports.”
Expressing gratitude for Turkey’s “amazing welcome”, “hospitality” and “excellent coordination with Iranian delegations”, he said I’m glad that each Iranian company has been able to find 3 Turkish counterparts. I hope that good things will happen in the meetings between the two parties and that we will see good contracts signed.”
Stressing the necessity of enhancing economic interactions with Turkey, Sattari said our duty as a governmental body is building bridges to facilitate communication so that university professors, students, technological companies, inventive companies, and science and technology parks, can find each other.
“We have set up investment funds and our export sale offices have also been activated and I recommend Iranian companies utilize the offices so that they can find their counterparts in Turkey and forge ties,” Sattari said.
The Iranian delegation arrived in Istanbul on Tuesday, and will continue its negotiations with the Turkish side until Thursday.
The trip is aimed at enhancing economic interaction between the private sectors of the two countries in the area of high technologies.
The activities of the Iranian knowledge-based companies visiting Turkey are mainly focused on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and Information Technology (IT), electronics, health (including stem cell, herbal medicine, etc.), advanced materials, engineering services, and machinery and equipment.
Also accompanying the delegation are representatives of Iran National Innovation Fund, a fund that offers facilities for research and innovation, and has so far provided services for over 2,300 Iranian knowledge-based companies.