The conference was funded by the European Union and German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development through GIZ.
The event was also sponsored by GroFin Iraq, a financing organization that provides loans of up to $2 million to SMEs in Iraq.
The goal of the conference was to inform the audience about the future of economic development in the Kurdistan Region and promote the services of Top Mountain Business Incubator.
Throughout the conference, speakers and panelists reviewed the challenges and opportunities related to the job market and entrepreneurship.
During his presentation on the future of the startup ecosystem in Iraq, one of the Co-founders of Top Mountain explained that within the next few years startups in Iraq will begin to rapidly multiply and grow as financing and technical skills become more widely available.
This predication is based on the rapid growth in startups that has occurred throughout the MENA region over the last 3 years. Some of the key conclusions reached by panelist and speakers are that companies in Iraq must expand their internship programs to help train the next generation of skilled workers.
Panelists also noted that lack of access to finance is the most critical challenge to SME growth. Despite the challenges facing businesses in Iraq, most of the attendees and panelists remain optimistic and anticipate a bright future for Iraq’s economy.
(Source: Top Mountain LLC)