UN Technology Bank for the Least Developed Countries which is hosted by TÜBİTAK MARTEK opened in Gebze!

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The inauguration ceremony of the Technology Bank, which is intended to strengthen the capacity of Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in the fields of science, technology and innovation and to facilitate their technology transfer activities, was held at Gebze TÜBİTAK Marmara Technopark (TÜBİTAK MARTEK). During the IV. United Nations Conference on Least Developed Countries (LDCs), held between 9-13 May 2011 in Istanbul, the President of the Republic of Turkey H.E. Recep Tayyip ERDOĞAN announced a science and technology commitment package for LDCs and one of the commitments in science, technology and innovation within the scope of the package was announced as the establishment of an international center for LDCs to take the role of “Technology Bank” in Turkey.


Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Minister of Science Industry and Technology Dr. Faruk ÖZLÜ said that the Technology Bank constitutes an important and historic turning point in terms of global efforts to strengthen LDCs’ – which are almost 47 countries – capacity in the fields of science, technology and innovation. The Minister Faruk Özlü has reminded that this idea first emerged in May 2011 with the call of establishment of a Technology Bank for LDCs in the Istanbul Action Plan adopted at the end of the 4th United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries. It was stated that the Technology Bank's operationalization took place at the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda adopted in September 2015 and with the Action Plan adopted at the end of the 3rd International Conference on the Development of the United Nations Development.


At the ceremony in his speech Minister Faruk ÖZLÜ pointed out that through the establishment of the Technology Bank the sub-target 17.8 of 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) was achieved and added: "This project constitutes one of our country’s most beautiful manifestations of humanitarian foreign policy. We run to the aid of the oppressed communities and extend a hand to the people who live in poverty, conflict and natural disasters."

Minister Dr. Faruk ÖZLÜ pointed out that Turkey has become one of the most charitable countries of the world in proportion to its national income, with the official development aid amounting to 8.2 billion dollars in 2017 and said: " We are paying great attention to act in close cooperation with local authorities while making aid. In addition to short-term humanitarian aid, we prioritize long-term, capacity-driven development assistance. LDGs have a special importance for our country while planning aid. With this understanding, we have been invited to host the UN Technology Bank for LDCs".


The Minister of Science, industry and Technology Faruk Özlü said that they decided to establish the Technology Bank TÜBİTAK MARTEK facilities believing that it would provide many opportunities and continued his speech as follows: "The Bank will be close to the IT valley that we have established in Gebze as well as our TÜBİTAK Research Institutes and will be able to benefit from the ecosystem created among them. In addition, the Bank will be positioned close to entrepreneurs who aim to develop products with advanced technologies, operate on international platforms and carry their R&D activities to international markets by establishing foreign partnerships. At the same time, the synergy that will occur with the combination of the capabilities of TÜBİTAK and its research institutes and the opportunities offered by the IT Valley will strengthen the power of the Technology Bank. Within the scope of the Science Technology and Innovation Support Mechanism, which is one of the main activity fields the Bank, our institutes will also contribute to the Bank in terms of human resources and new project and cooperation opportunities for joint cooperation projects."


Minister Faruk ÖZLÜ also emphasized that he believes the panel to be held after the inauguration ceremony will provide an opportunity to explain the important role of the Technology Bank in the development of the LDCs from different dimensions. After the opening speeches , a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between TÜBİTAK, the Technology Bank and the Global Good Fund, aiming to lead cooperations which will promote the development of LDCs and provide support for them.

In addition to Dr. Faruk ÖZLÜ, Minister of Science Industry and Technology, UN Secretary-General Amina Mohammad and Kato Utoikamanu, Deputy UN Secretary-General and the High Representative of the Least Developed Countries, together with numerous domestic and foreign high-level invitees attended the inauguration ceremony.

With the opening of the Technology Bank in TÜBİTAK MARTEK, it will be located near entrepreneurs who aim to develop products with advanced technologies, to operate in international platforms and to carry R&D activities to international markets via foreign partnerships. Thanks to the Technology Bank, which aims to help LDCs in the field of technology transfer by supporting their efforts to strengthen their capacity in the fields of science, technology and innovation, important steps will be taken to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goals.