Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports Zhanna Andreasyan received Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Kingdom of Sweden to Armenia Patrik Svensson. ESCS Deputy Minister Arthur Martirosyan also attended the meeting.
Welcoming the Ambassador, the Minister expressed confidence that as a result of his activities and joint efforts, the Armenian-Swedish relations will further strengthen and deepen.
Zhanna Andreasyan stressed the importance of implementing joint programs with the Swedish side in the scope of coordination of the Ministry and expressed willingness to take the necessary steps in this regard.
Highlighting the experience of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), the ESCS Minister suggested considering the possibility of cooperation in the directions of early childhood development, universal inclusive and vocational education.
Zhanna Andreasyan also underlined that within the framework of the Armenian-Swedish friendly cooperation, there is great potential that can contribute to strengthening inter-university cooperation through joint educational and research programs, as well as exchange programs for students and lecturers. To improve the internationalization process and ensure the sustainable development of HEIs of the two states, the Minister proposed to expand the possibilities of implementing “Erasmus+” programs.
During the meeting, the parties also discussed the possibility of implementing joint cultural programs. The work carried out within the framework of the “ArtNexus” program was particularly emphasized in the context of the advancing cultural policy, and development of cultural dialogue and cultural ties with Armenia, Sweden and European countries, in general.
During the meeting, ESCS Deputy Minister Arthur Martirosyan, proposed to the Ambassador to undertake activities on the establishment of an Armenian studies center at one of the Swedish universities, noting that the Ministry carries out consistent activities to teach the Armenian language and Armenian studies at universities, museums-institutes and centers of foreign countries, as well as to promote Armenian studies: “Today, about a dozen Armenian studies centers operating abroad receive funding from the state budget of the Republic of Armenia.”
Ambassador Patrik Svensson congratulated Zhanna Andreasyan on her appointment to the post of ESCS Minister and thanked her for the warm welcome and constructive conversation. The Ambassador highly appreciated the sectoral priorities outlined by the Minister, emphasizing that the Swedish side is always ready to expand the scope of cooperation.
During the meeting, the ESCS Minister drew the Ambassador's attention to the humanitarian crisis that arose as a result of the blockade of Nagorno-Karabakh, noting that the right to education of more than 30,000 children is being violated.
Zhanna Andreasyan reminded that since December 12, 2022, Azerbaijan has closed the Lachin Corridor - the only road connecting Nagorno Karabakh with the Republic of Armenia and the rest of the world, as a result of which the humanitarian crisis has had an emphatically negative impact on all sectors. In this context, the Minister expressed hope that international structures will take targeted steps to resolve the problem in the shortest possible time.
The sides touched upon other issues of mutual interest at the meeting. An agreement was reached to take practical steps on the topics discussed.