Israel Advises the Czech Republic – Invest in High Tech!

Post date: Mar 27, 2014 8:52:14 AM

Israel Advises the Czech Republic – Invest in High Tech!

Israeli consultants advise the Czech government: be more creative, reinvent yourselves, and use your full potential.

According to Israeli experts, the Czech Republic has the potential to develop its own high tech industry. This is something that can speed up its economic development.

As part of the close relationship betweeen Israel and the Czech Republic, an Israeli-Czech workshop took place during 2013 in the Czech Ministry of Trade and Industry. Israeli experts specializing venture capital and setting up technological hothouses visited the Czech Republic for a technological project organized by CzechInvest and the Czech Ministry of Trade and Industry. These experts have helped the growth of the Israeli economy for many years.

"Israel's best results are not necessarily in the field of venture capital investments in terms of the percentage of the GNP, but also in the number of patents registered. That was one of the reasons that we chose the Czech Republic as the fifth destination for the GESHER/MOST project," said Mr. Peter Osko from the Czech Ministry of Trade and Industry who is also responsible for managing CzechInvest.

"Venture capital funds, seed funds, and technological hothouses are important tools for future development of the Czech economy.‎ ‎Israel's experience will help prepare new moves to support innovative Czech companies," he added.

The Israeli economy, which during the 1950s mainly exported oranges, has become a high tech superpower in recent years. While the level of orange exports has not changed, software exports have shot up and Israeli exports have grown by more than 500% in this field. While in 1987 they were $7 billion, in 2006 Israel's software exports totalled $39.7 billion.

The experts, Eliezer Manor, partner and founder of the Mofet venture capital fund, Rinat Pridor, author of the Israeli government program for advancement of technological hothouses, Professor Shlomo Maital of the Samuel Neeman Institute, Ayelet Matalon, a lecturer in Tel Aviv University and Ilan Peled, director of the Magnet program note that "Behind this process are hard work, clear aims and creativity."

"We have to plan every step well, dedicate a lot of time to this project and understand that everyone has to cooperate. This is a long term project and government support is essential at least at the beginning," Rinat Pridor describes the success mechanism. 65% of projects in Israel receive investment from the private sector.

According to the experts, the similarity between the Czech Republic and Israel is clear. Both countries have a small local market, few natural resources and are not closely connected to any strong economic power. The high tech industry can compensate for these disadvantages. The Czech Republic needs to focus more on developing the technological and scientific fields, as well as the connection between the individual and academia but above all not be afraid of innovation and seeking new paths.

"The Czechs are like the Israelis in some ways, but in other ways they are completely different.‎ ‎You have to create a modern ecological system , which will suit Czech culture and history, and not copy someone else's model," recommends Professor Shlomo Maital.

The experts summed up their conclusions during the final discussion that took place in Prague: research, renew, focus on training young people and on industries with maximal future returns, such as biotechnology, nanotechnology, information and communications.‎ ‎

To read further articles and for further information on Israel-Czech relations, click here.