The issue was discussed during a meeting between Armenia’s acting Minister of Economy Vahan Kerobyan and an Iranian delegation led by Mehdi Eliassi, Vice President for Science and Technology, which also comprised Deputy Minister of Communications, Chairman of the Information Technology Organization Amir Nazemi Ashani, members of the Iranian Parliament, representatives of a number of large Iranian companies.
The delegation was in Armenia to participate in the Armenian-Iranian business forum.
The Iranian side said it has a rich experience in establishing high-tech centers in different countries, suggesting establishing a similar center in Armenia.
The meeting also referred to the bilateral cooperation within the framework of “Meghri” and “Aras” free economic zones. Taking into account Armenia’s membership in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), the parties discussed the possibilities of organizing joint productions in different sectors of the economy and exporting the manufactured products to the EAEU to other countries.
“Establishing a joint technology park by Iran and Armenia is a good idea, and we will attempt to launch the park over the course of six months,” the Armenia official said.
The Iranian side also expressed readiness to cooperate in equipping Armenian medical institutions with Iranian equipment. The prospects of cooperation in the field of pharmaceuticals were discussed.
Building houses of innovation
Iran plans to set up two houses of innovation and technology in Syria and Russia in the near future with the aim of finding new markets for domestic knowledge-based products in the region.
Exporting technological products of Iranian knowledge-based companies is one of the important and key programs of the vice presidency for science and technology, and in this regard, the first house of innovation and technology was inaugurated in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi on January 27.
By supporting innovative ideas, holding technological and innovative events, the centers will be a platform for the development and promotion of Iranian knowledge-based companies, startups, and creative industries.
A house of innovation and technology has already been set up as a technology exchange office in China, Mehdi Ghalehnoei, an official with the vice presidency for science and technology, said, IRNA reported.
Currently, some 5,000 knowledge-based companies are active in the country, manufacturing diverse products to meet the needs of the domestic market while saving large amounts of foreign currency.
Vice President for Science and Technology Sourena Sattari told the Tehran Times in October 2020 that “U.S. sanctions caused exports of knowledge-based companies to decline three years ago, however, it has returned to growth and is projected to reach the pre-sanctions level of more than $1 billion by the end of the current [Iranian calendar] year (March 20, 2021).
Fortunately, last year, companies achieved a record sale of 1.2 quadrillion rials (nearly $28.5 billion at the official rate of 42,000 rials), which is expected to increase by 40 percent this year.”
To date, 42 knowledge-based companies with a total value of 2.8 quadrillion rials (nearly $66.6 billion) have been listed on the stock exchange and they will soon turn into the biggest businesses in the county, Sattari said.