Launching of the EU for Innovation project!26 February 2019
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Embassy of Sweden Tirana launched today the “EU for Innovation” project. Funded by the European Union and with additional support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) as well as the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) the project aims to strengthen the eco-system for innovation and start-up promotion in Albania. The project has a budget of up to 7.539.238 EUR (EU contribution: 6.600.000 EUR, German contribution: 719.238 EUR; Swedish contribution: 220.000 EUR).
With the presence of the Albanian Minister of Finance and Economy Anila Denaj, EU Ambassador Luigi Soreca, the German Ambassador Susanne Schuetz and the Swedish Ambassador Johan Ndisi.
The EU Ambassador Luigi Soreca highlighted that encouraging the spirit of innovation in a young person is not about telling them what to do. It is about empowering them to do what they love. Our duty is to build bridges between innovators and the institutions, by attracting talents and supporting them. Also, when they fail. We want to strengthen the innovation ecosystem in Albania, involve highly skilled citizens in discussing research, create an environment that attracts and nurture talents and support a significant number of Albanian start-ups.
The German Ambassador welcomed the partnership with European Union Delegation and the Embassy of Sweden in Tirana. She highlighted the tremendous creative potential in Albania they have encounter with the IDEA programme. Beside the enthusiasm it takes the right administrative and legal framework conditions to help forge hitherto unknown alliances between the government and potential new partners and networks in order to develop such ideas into successful business models and to open up space for inventive talent and risk-taking.
The Swedish Ambassador Johan Ndisi, emphasized the importance of the involvement of Sweden in this new innovation project. He also highlighted the fact that Sweden is the partner country of Germany at this year’s Hannover Messe, the world’s leading trade fair for industrial technology. He called young people in the society and all women to take the opportunity and test their ideas.
The EU for Innovation project which will run until September 2021, is implemented by GIZ and the Swedish Embassy in Tirana. Interventions will support the capacity for innovation among the innovation ecosystem actors (start-ups, innovation support providers and policy-makers), build linkages within the Albanian innovation ecosystem and internationally and fund innovative startups and innovation support providers.
As part of the launching event, successful Albanian diaspora entrepreneurs as well as innovative start-ups and academic researcher shared their ideas and experiences.