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Envirnomental technology and know-how a growth area in internationalisation

Jukka Noponen, Director of Sitra’s Environmental Programme, believes that the environmental field has great development potential.

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Press release 12 April 2005 Jukka Noponen, Director of Sitra’s Environmental Programme, believes that the environmental field has great development potential. – Finland has every opportunity to strengthen its position as a leading country in the field of environment, Noponen said at the Environment Venture Fair held in Lahti on 12 April. Sitra’s Environmental Programme aims to make environmental technology and know-how a growth area for SMEs in their internationalisation. This requires building an environmental cluster, solidifying the businesses of SMEs targeting international markets, and an increase in investments in the field.Boosting the development of the environmental cluster is one of the key objectives of Sitra’s Programme. The tools employed in the Programme are Sitra’s competence in capital investment, new business development and research. The Environmental Programme brings together competencies of several actors to draw up a plan of action. Co-operation with companies, investors, and the public sector, as well as synergy with other similar pro-grammes abroad, are prerequisites for the success of the Programme. Environmental know-how in Finland is of top international level, but the field is fragmented leading to a lack of powerful international visibility. – This is exactly where an independent organisation such as Sitra can make a difference, Noponen points out. Sitra has been an active operator in the environmental field since its establishment. The basic survey on the state of Finnish environment was carried out as early as 1968 – 1970. The Programme is still in its early stage and currently its plan of action is being devised. This year’s goals include launching a basic assessment and co-operation with interest groups. The strategy will be finalised within a year based on the common views of the different actors in the field. The aim is to achieve a national plan of action. The targets for the Programme are set high – By the time the Programme finishes, it is expected that Sitra will have an environmental investment portfolio to take to the international markets. The idea is to make the first capital investments by the end of this year, says Noponen. Jukka Noponen, M.Sc.(Tech.), was appointed Director of Sitra’s Environmental Programme as of 14 March 2005. He has previously served as Commercial Director for Jaakko Pöyry Infrastructure and Environment, and President and CEO of Soil and Water Ltd. Further information Jukka Noponen, Director, Sitra, tel. +358 40 5874323 Finnish National Fund for Research and Development Sitra, the Finnish National Fund for Research and Development, is an independent public foundation under the supervision of the Finnish Parliament. It is our duty to promote stable and balanced development in Finland, the qualitative and quantitative growth of its economy and its international competitiveness and co-operation. Our goal is to have a strong social impact by focusing our competencies on selected programme areas: innovation, health care, nutrition, environment, Russia and India.

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