Israel’s high-tech sector is booming now but in order to keep it that way in the future, government leaders understand that promoting entrepreneurship in minority sectors is crucial.
As such, the Second High-Tech Conference for Minorities is taking place today (September 10) in Nazareth.
“Accelerating the integration of minorities into the high-tech sector is in the national interest,” says Avi Hasson, Chief Scientist at Israel’s Ministry of Economy.
Hasson has made it a flagship project to make entrepreneurship accessible to peripheral communities in Israel.
“We have defined our goal to work to integrate all sectors of society in the Israeli culture of innovation and technology. The plan enables minority sectors to take part in the Israeli cycle of innovation and there is a constant rise in the number of companies and entrepreneurs which become part of the Israeli high-tech industry,” he says.
“Arab society must become part of Israeli innovation and technology if it wants to improve its quality of life. I am delighted with the cooperation with the Office of the Chief Scientist and with the growth in the number of businesses and entrepreneurs from Arab society who take advantage of the tools and programs we have formulated with the Chief Scientist, like the grants (85% support) for enterprises coming from Arab society,” says Ayman Saif, Director of the Authority for Economic Development of Minorities at the Israeli Ministry of Social Equality.
The conference is a joint effort between the Office of the Chief Scientist at the Israeli Ministry of Economy and the Authority for Economic Development of Minorities at the Israeli Ministry of Social Equality. It aims to bring together entrepreneurs acting to promote entrepreneurship in minority sectors – including investors and mentors.
“From the beginning of this year we have been witnessing a significant rise in the number of companies asking for support as well as a change in the type of activity by Arab entrepreneurs. If in the past most success stories came from the pharmaceutical field, today there are more companies dealing with software and electronics. As a result of the privileged conditions, 19 new requests were made as part of the program and we expect this trend to continue,” says Anya Eldan, Director of Early Stage Companies and Technological Incubators at the Office of the Chief Scientist.
Minister of Social Equality Gila Gamliel says there is no reason that some segments of society are being left out of the success and progress.
“The Ministry of Social Equality is promoting, through the ‘Digital Israel’ program, long-term strategic plans for the integration of Israeli Arabs and the ultra-Orthodox in the field of technological innovation and works intensively to promote their place in Israeli society,” she says.
The conference includes lectures and workshops. It will also present participants with employment framework assistance and tools offered by the Office of the Chief Scientist.