Sharjah eyes fruitful cultural and economic ties with Finnish cities

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A high-level meeting is in progress in Sharjah.

Staff Reporter, Gulf Today

The Department of Government Relations (DGR) in Sharjah recently hosted a high-level delegation from Finland to strengthen collaboration between Sharjah and Finnish cities in socioeconomic sectors and the knowledge economy, and expand bilateral investment prospects.

 Sheikh Fahim Al Qasimi, Chairman of DGR, welcomed the Finnish delegation headed by Marianne Nissilä, Ambassador of Finland to the UAE, and Johanna Riihimaa, Counsellor, Trade and Investment, at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, and discussed ways to enhance cultural cooperation with Finnish cities, and broaden and deepen economic relations as well as promote bilateral trade and investment.

Sheikh Fahim emphasised Sharjah’s keenness to advance cultural ties with Finland, which is renowned for its accomplishments in vital sectors, most notably education, and pointed out the country’s shared core values with the emirate’s cultural and developmental project, which stems from the vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.

The Chairman affirmed that the meeting builds on the longstanding strong ties between the two sides and highlighted the respective milestones achieved in socioeconomic development and education that serve as a strong foundation to forge new strategic initiatives and meet the aspirations of the two sides.

Highlighting the commonalities between the educational systems in both countries,  Marianne Nissilä, Ambassador of Finland to the UAE, said the shared values provide unique opportunities to cooperate in the knowledge sector, and exchange expertise in other fields.

The Ambassador stressed the importance of advancing cooperation with Sharjah and benefiting from the emirate’s investment-friendly environment, adding that the UAE has become a preferred destination for Finnish investors across diverse sectors.

Meanwhile, the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI), representing the Sharjah Excellence Award, proceeds on its tour throughout the GCC countries to motivate and invite Gulf private sector companies to participate, nominate, and get introduced to the award’s new cycle and its two categories: “Sharjah Gulf Excellence Award” and “Sharjah Gulf Localization Award.”

The Sharjah Excellence Award recently concluded a trip across the Kingdom of Bahrain, Qatar, and Kuwait, led by Nada Al Hajri, General Coordinator of the Sharjah Excellence Award. During the Kingdom of Bahrain and Kuwait visits, coordinated meetings were held to highlight the award’s role in enhancing the competitiveness of the UAE and Gulf business communities and enabling them to benefit from the awards’ quality values, leadership, and innovations.

Furthermore, Qatar’s visit included a joint meeting with the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, during which the participation criteria, application, and registration dates for companies via the award’s website were underlined. Moreover, both parties committed to cooperating on evaluating the projects of the participants and proposing additional criteria that boost the strengths and areas for improvement of the Gulf companies participating in the award. The meeting also discussed the award’s requirements for community responsibility and the importance of establishing it among private-sector enterprises.

Digital Transformation:  Jassem AlBlooshi, head of organisational excellence at Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB), confirmed that the government of the United Arab Emirates played a leading role in the digital transformation process in the region; beginning with the provision of ‘smart government’ electronic services in 2013, to the now highly digitalised and sophisticated government services within the revolutionary ‘Fourth Industrial City’, which is fundamentally dependent on the digital revolution and heavy use of information technology.

This came during his recent participation in the Intersect Conference for Financial Technology, held in the Austrian capital of Vienna between June 13th – 15th 2022. The conference, which was organised by Diebold Nixdorf Company, hosted groups of senior executives and thought leaders in the field of financial technology from all over the world, who actively participated in the conference. Enhancing the competitiveness of the digital transformation system in the financial sector of the UAE

Jassem AlBlooshi, added that the digital economy is a major focus within the strategic plans of the national economy for UAE Vision 2021. A new phase has been launched in the leadership and sustainability of the growth of the UAE economy based on knowledge, innovation, and future technological applications. These three elements are projected to contribute to enhancing the competitiveness of the digital transformation system in the financial sector of the UAE.

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