Embassy holds reception to celebrate 243rd anniversary of Independence
KUWAIT CITY, March 28: The Embassy of the United States of America held a reception to celebrate the 243rd anniversary of its Independence under theme of ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship’, on Wednesday evening. The event was attended by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid Al- Sabah, Minister of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Roudhan, and Deputy Foreign Minister, Khaled Al-Jarallah, along with other representatives from the government, members of the Kuwaiti diplomatic corps and other distinguished guests. US Ambassador Lawrence Silverman shared that the past year had been a good year for relations between the United States and Kuwait.
“Just one week ago, we were honored by the visit of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Kuwait to co-chair, alongside the Deputy Prime Minister, the third annual Strategic Dialogue between our two countries.” He pointed out that the United States and Kuwait share many interests for this region and that Secretary Pompeo had highlighted one of them when he called for a solution to the Gulf Cooperation Council dispute and the return of Gulf unity.
The Ambassador stressed, “Strong US-GCC relations and a united GCC will best position us to deal with challenges and threats by demonstrating to those seeking to destabilize the region that we will resist such efforts.” He touched on other aspects of the US-Kuwaiti relationship from the countries’ close collaboration within the UN Security Council on challenges such as Yemen, Syria and Iran, as well as North Korea and Venezuela to bilaterally working to expand trade and investment.
“To follow up on HH the Amir’s meeting last September with CEOs of 15 major American companies, the US Chamber of Commerce is establishing the new US-Kuwait Business Council. Secretary Pompeo met its first members here last week”, he stated. Ambassador Silverman shared that the Strategic Dialogue delegations had signed eight agreements to enable greater information sharing to prevent terrorist attacks; facilitate training of all types; and intensify educational and cultural cooperation.
This cooperation also included the restarting of the direct Kuwait Airways flight from Kuwait to New York in January. With regards to cooperation in the field of defense, Ambassador Silverman reiterated US commitment to Kuwait’s security. He shared that advanced systems like the F-18 Super Hornet and the M1A2 tank will further modernize the Kuwaiti Armed Forces, and shared the two countries were also intensifying their cyber security collaboration. He highlighted the US Embassy’s encouragement of economic diversification through innovation and entrepreneurship in Kuwait.
One of the recent agreements between the US Department of Commerce and Kuwait’s National Fund for Small and Medium Enterprise Development will promote innovation, entrepreneurship, and small business development. Ambassador Silverman stressed that innovation affects every aspect of our lives and echoed the sentiments of HH the Amir that the private sector must lead Kuwait’s future development. He pointed out that governments everywhere should nurture innovation and entrepreneurship by creating environments in which people can fail and be encouraged and enabled to try again.
He pointed out that Kuwait’s 2013 decision to allow 100% foreign investment enterprises was an innovative step undertaken by the government itself. He announced that the US Embassy will offer visitor programs that promote innovation and entrepreneurship and expand its support in the field of education.
Also, a NASA engineer who developed the Mars Rover will visit the Sheikh Abdullah Salem Cultural Center to talk to and hopefully inspire future Kuwaiti scientists. In his address, Ambassador Silverman underscored the importance of not only promoting innovation but also protecting it and shared that the US was working closely with Kuwait to strengthen protection of intellectual property.
He stated that the environment that spawns innovation exists here in Kuwait: in KFAS, KISR, the National Fund, Coded, Proteges, Sirdab Lab, INJAZ, Tribe, Cubical Services, KAFO, Fikra, Brilliant Lab, Erada, Zinc and CEE Network, among others, as well as in the companies that support entrepreneurial initiatives. Several exhibits by representatives of Kuwait’s startup, creative and innovative communities were featured at the event.
By Cinatra Alvares Arab Times Staff