The Bulgarian President Reached an Agreement with the Emir of Qatar on Funding an Innovative Children’s Training Center in Sofia
President Rumen Radev and Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani discussed in Doha high-tech projects which will set a new long-term framework of bilateral partnership
Joint innovative projects between Bulgaria and Qatar in the high-tech sphere were discussed in Doha by President Rumen Radev and Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, at the invitation of whom the Bulgarian Head of State is on an official visit to the Arab country. The two held a tete-tete meeting and led the plenary talks between the two delegations. In Doha Rumen Radev was welcomed with an official ceremony by the Emir. This is the second meeting between the two within a year after Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani was on a state visit to Sofia in 2018.
The Emir of Qatar has assumed the commitment to offer financial support for building and providing the equipment for a training center for Bulgarian children in Sofia, Rumen Radev told journalists in Doha after the meeting. “This is an initiative the president’s office has been working on for over a year and which I consider my personal duty to make it happen. Everything should be extremely transparent and should be proved in terms of expenditure and efficiency,” the Head of State said. He highlighted the enormous public effect of the project, among the goals of which is the free education of children in promising subjects in the sphere of innovations and information technologies. “We are responsible today for the future of our children so that they will not again be cheap workers in their country, neither be the “grey matter” that escapes abroad,” the President said and added that with such a training center Bulgaria has the potential to keep the talented young Bulgarians at home and even to attract specialists from abroad.
In Rumen Radev’s words, projects of this kind function successfully in Armenia and France, and in Bulgaria they may be reinforced. “Another element that we, Bulgarians, may and should introduce in such a center is that it can become the home of the Bulgarian participants in Olympiads,’ Rumen Radev said. The President emphasized that thus the potential of our young talents can be supported, thanks to which our country ranks high in the world Olympiads in natural sciences such as mathematics, physics, chemistry, and also linguistics and information technologies. In this center conditions may be created for establishing start-ups in the sphere of high technologies and thus the center can be self-supporting and autonomous, Radev said.
“The high-tech projects with a high added value do not require considerable investments such as transport infrastructure, but are directed towards the future and can set a new long-term framework of bilateral cooperation with Qatar,” the Head of State further said at the talks.
The President said that at the meeting he also received the Emir of Qatar’s support for creating a technological park for biotechnologies, which should be implemented by the University of Plovdiv and develop the scientific infrastructure of the institution of higher education. “The project drafted by the university is on a world level,” Radev noted. The initiative for a biotechnological park in Plovdiv envisages the development of high technologies in the spheres of medicine, pharmacy, cosmetics, food processing and also the development of sustainable agriculture in areas with extreme climate, which Qatar may also benefit from.
President Rumen Radev and Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani also discussed the opportunities for Qatar’s participation in the implementation of infrastructure projects in Bulgaria. “Given the increased transport flow through Bulgaria, there is again interest in reviving Qatari investments in the North-South corridors, the Ruse-Svilengrad highway, the tunnel under Shipka,” the Head of State said. He voiced hope that soon the Qatari side will address the Bulgarian government for these projects. The Emir of the State of Qatar has invited, for his part, Bulgarian companies to take part in the implementation of infrastructure projects pertaining to the FIFA World Cup Championship to be held in Qatar in 2022.
Bulgaria offers appropriate conditions for innovative companies, Rumen Radev said earlier at a Qatari-Bulgarian business forum held in Doha. The President emphasized that a lot of West European companies have located their research centers in Bulgaria. Our country’s export is oriented towards the EU and our export increases every year, Rumen Radev told the participants in the forum.
In Doha the Bulgarian Head of State also held talks with the Prime Minister and Interior Minister of the State of Qatar Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser Khalifa Al Thani. Rumen Radev and his wife Desislava Radeva also visited the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Public Development. In Doha the Head of State also visited the headquarters of the Forum of Exporters of Gas.