In a seminar held in the city of Punta Arenas, the Regional Productive Development Agency presented the Chile-Sweden Cooperation Fund, an initiative that has been considered a new development alternative for small and medium enterprises from the Magallanes Region.
At the moment of the presentation, which was attended by representatives of the tourism, mining, energy, and livestock sectors, Agency Director José Luis Contreras valued the initiative’s contribution as it allows the opening of new markets for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) from the region.
“This tool is tremendously useful because it allows the far south of the world to be connected with Europe in a quick, agile and efficient way. There is no doubt that the fund provides many benefits, as it allows us to enter the international market, something that is very difficult, even within Chile, he said.
The occasion was also used for the different productive sectors to obtain in-depth information on what it means to be part of this network connecting Latin America and Europe, with particular emphasis on the development of activities that can link up the different productive sectors with Sweden’s.
For president of the Puerto Natales Chamber of Tourism Teobaldo Ruiz, the initiative will provide “the opportunity for businesspeople from Puerto Natales to apply to a project, especially with regard to bringing environmental technologies over from Sweden,” in addition to being “very promising, especially considering work in national parks.”
For his part, fund director Cristián Diaz highlighted the benefits of this bet. “This project has already provided over US$3.4 million to finance innovative ideas since it started. Likewise, over 200 jobs have been created. We want to open a space to generate exchange with Sweden, especially in Magallanes with the convergence in port development,” he stated.
Executive Director Anna Pfeifer explained the decision to choose the Magallanes Region as the place to present the fund. “We wanted to present the fund here in Punta Arenas as we believe that it needs to become known all over Chile, including its most extreme areas. This city is characterized by its port activity, a sector that is very highly developed in Sweden. Businesspeople were very satisfied with this initiative, which invites them to get to know the world and to go beyond the region, very important points for those who seek to grow and to become big companies in the future,” he stressed.
Model of Success
The event was also attended by representatives from the company RESISTER, a leader in integrated waste management and treatment, in addition to the area of environmental technology services. The company has been one of those to benefit from the system.
“The Chile-Sweden Cooperation Fund connects two very different worlds that are at the same time very similar to each other; similar in terms of weather conditions and the development of economic activities. In my opinion the good thing about this program is its efficient work evaluating projects, and my message to businesspeople is to dare to learn and to go ahead and present their ideas without fear,” stated Andres Concha, a business engineer at the company.
Thus the Chilean state has implemented a new tool to speed up the process of integration into international markets, which began two decades ago and has made Chile reference among Latin American countries. The country’s economy is currently considered one of the ten most open financial systems in the world.
If you want more information on the fund, which allows the development of new techniques and technologies, travel to make contacts, the creation of capacities and competence, and business meetings, visit the website www.fondochilesuecia.cl.