Armenian Blockchain Forum (ABF) intends to create a high-tech cluster in Armenia, which would become the Armenian analogy of Silicon Valley.
ABF press service has informed that on 20 December 2017, the company representatives presented Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan and the government’s working group with a road map for the initiative.
The meeting between ABF and the Armenian government resulted in confirmation of the idea of creation a free economic zone (FEZ).
The new cluster’s primary objective will be to organize and regulate unique infrastructure for developing technological projects from around the world in Armenia.
The first step in implementing the initiative to create a high-tech cluster will cover the first six months of 2018. It will involve opening of an international accelerator to use it as a platform for launching and developing innovative projects from around the world, and organization of technical platforms and industrial data centers to support decentralized ledger technology in the FEZ.
“This initiative will boost the development of higher technologies in Armenia and will help turn our country into a global technology leader, attracting investors and creating new jobs. This will clearly help Armenia’s economy to grow,” said Armenian Minister for Economic Development and Investment Suren Karayan.
The new ecosystem will also include an identification center verifying that FEZ residents comply with international rules. Moreover, ABF has plans to work together with Armenia’s leading universities on a series of educational and research programs.
ABF estimates that in its first year, the ecosystem will create 250-300 new high-paying jobs and attract at least USD 120 million in investment.
“We think Armenia has everything necessary today: human resources, energy and technology. We just have to provide a boost and open up new opportunities for development. We believe that it is possible to create a platform in Armenia that will bring together global trends, international players and local intellectual resources,” highlighted ABF managing partner Ilya Goldberg.
International consultancy KPMG will provide comprehensive advisory, technological and legal support in creating the innovative cluster. FEZ residents will be exempt from VAT when providing services and supplying goods in the FEZ, and from the corporate tax.
ABF and the government’s working group are collaborating intensely to create an infrastructure platform, ECOS, which will provide an ecosystem offering comprehensive and complete support for the players on the new high-tech market.