Posted on October 21, 2017

HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Saud al-Thani, Governor of Qatar Central Bank (QCB) and chairman of Qatar Development Bank (QDB), is currently visiting Sweden along with QDB CEO Abdulaziz bin Nasser al-Khalifa and representatives from Qatar Financial Centre (QFC).

The knowledge-sharing visit, which began on Wednesday and continues until tomorrow, focuses on innovation and entrepreneurship in the areas of financial technology, bio-medical technology and waste-to-energy technology, the Swedish embassy in Qatar has said in a statement. The delegation’s visit is hosted by Mikael Damberg, Swedish Minister of Enterprise and Innovation, who had invited HE Sheikh Abdullah to Sweden. During the tour, the Qatari officials are scheduled to meet several important Swedish public sector, academia and private sector representatives. 

Besides HE Sheikh Abdullah and al-Khalifa, the delegation comprises Sheikh Khalid bin Saod al-Thani, director of QCB’s Financial Stability & Statistics Department; Michael Rayn, executive manager at QFC; Abdulrahman bin Hesham al-Suwaidi, CEO’s office manager at QDB; and Rauf Mammadov, CEO’s adviser at QDB. The meetings will also be attended by Abdulaziz al-Naemi, chargé d’affaires at Qatar’s embassy in Stockholm, while Ewa Polano, Sweden’s ambassador to Qatar, is accompanying HE the Governor on his visit. As part of the visit, HE Sheikh Abdullah and al-Khalifa have met with the host, Damberg, and the meeting was also attended by representatives from Vinnova, the Swedish Agency for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Promotion, and SISP, Swedish Incubators and Science Parks. 

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A meeting was also held with HE Sheikh Abdullah’s Swedish counterpart, Stefan Ingves, governor of the Swedish Riksbank. A major focus area during the visit to Stockholm is knowledge sharing in the area of financial technology, which is currently a prioritised area for QDB, the statement notes. A financial technology roundtable seminar has been hosted for the delegation by Business Sweden. It was attended by the full Qatari delegation, and on the Swedish side by representatives from several key private sector financial technology companies and banks. A separate meeting was held with EQT, a Swedish private equity firm specialising in financial technology. 

Another focus area for QDB and the delegation is innovation and entrepreneurship in bio-medical technology. Because of this, meetings have been held with Dr Niclas Adler, chairman of Karolinska Development, and Dr Hans Wigzell, Professor Emeritus and former president of Karolinska Institute’s Nobel Prize Committee. During this meeting, collaboration opportunities between Sweden and Qatar in the field of bio-medical technology and innovation were discussed, with a focus on how both parties could leverage their strengths to form a mutually beneficial relationship, both on the research and commercial sides. 

Further, a knowledge-sharing visit has been held to Smart City Sweden under the tagline ‘Waste to Energy – Waste as a Resource’. Additionally, HE the Governor and al-Khalifa have met with Maria Rankka, CEO of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce, following up on her visit to Doha last year. Additional meetings and visits included a study visit to KTH, the Royal Institute of Technology and its innovation and incubation space, among others. The visit of HE Sheikh Abdullah and al-Khalifa to Sweden symbolises the close relations of the two countries, and a strengthened commitment between Sweden and Qatar in the areas most relevant to Qatar National Vision 2030, the statement adds.

source: Gulf Times