KSP 2017-2018: Launched in ITSR
The 2017-2018 Knowledge Sharing Program (KSP) of Ministry of Strategy and Finance of Republic of Korea was kicked off on September 23rd here in Tehran. KSP was awarded to Institute for Trade Studies and Research this year and in the one year process of the program, Korean and Iranian researchers will work together to address competitiveness challenges of Iranian industries by deriving from successful Korean experiences, with a particular focus on downstream petrochemical, pharmaceutical and medical equipment industries.
In the launching seminar for this year’s KSP, aside from Korean Development Institute’s (KDI) research delegation, ITSR research team presented its initial findings on determined research topics. Korean ambassador in Tehran, Mr.Kim, and Dr.Razavi, the president of ITSR also attended the launching seminar meeting.
Dr.Razavi initiated the meeting by extending his welcome to the Korean delegation and particularly, his Excellency, Ambassador Kim. He then proceeded to outline the strategic importance of KSP and other international joint research projects in ITSR’s agenda. He emphasized that the Korean experience of financing big industries by export incentives and development of extensive downstream petrochemical capacities without access to feedstock resources, are among successful experiences that could prove extremely beneficial for Iranian industrial initiatives. The president of ITSR, stated that export promotion is number one priority for Ministry of Industry, Mine and Trade; therefore knowledge sharing programs revolving around enhancing competitiveness are completely in line with other initiatives currently carried out in ITSR.
His Excellency, Ambassador Kim, started his remarks with reminding the Korean delegation, the complexity of understanding Iranian setting and therefore its economy. He alluded to the fact that Iran is not a country where desktop research would be of much benefit and admonished the researchers from superficial analysis that would not take into account the environment-specific factors that are present in the Iranian economy. Mr.Kim thanked Dr.Razavi for ITSR’s stellar track record in enhancing bilateral relations with Korean industrial think tanks and stated that increased understanding of the two markets will help the business communities in the two countries to better leverage the existing economic opportunities.
The rest of session was spent on presentations of research teams. Dr.Kim of Dongguk University in Seoul and Dr.Bashiri from Economics & Competitiveness Studies Research Department in ITSR discussed the competitiveness in macro terms for Iranian manufacturing sector. Dr.Jung of Ajou University in Seoul and Dr.Shafie of Industrial & Mining Development Research Department in ITSR presented their initial research background analysis on enhancing competitiveness of Iranian downstream petrochemical industries. And finally, Dr.Lim of Dong-Eui University in Busan and Dr.Salim of Industrial & Mining Development Research Department in ITSR talked about their initial findings on competitiveness of pharmaceutical and medical equipment industries in Iran.
The Korean delegation is arranged to be in Tehran until September 25th; the remaining days will be spent in meetings with relevant policy makers, business communities and academics. Each research team will leverage these meetings to further understanding on their respective research field.
The second session of KSP which will again be held in ITSR in Tehran, is named “KSP Policy Seminar and In-depth Study” and will be held from October 28th- October 30th. It is planned that in this session a solid road map would be presented for each agenda by the research teams.