The participants of the ProcessSME project had their joint meeting in Narvik 15th -16th. During the first day, the discussions dealt with the project situation and SME interviews in each countries. The interview snapshots from Norwegian, Swedish and Finnish SMEs offered interesting and valuable information of the firms, and the items the project can advance their business, networking and servitization.
For the future tasks, the participants agreed the actions list for next 3 months, schedule and todo list for each partner. The Process SME project is on the good run, and the main objective, the improvement of the competitiveness of SMEs seems to be many steps closer, concluded Project Manager Seppo Saari the meeting.
Workshop with process industry companies
The Narvik workshop focused on introducing companies in fields of petroleum sector, circular economy, metallurgical and concrete industries, and cooperation possibilities with SMEs. Firstly, Mr Ørjan Birkeland from Statoil informed the audience about oil and gas industry, and additionally, about the opportunities and challenges the industry globally and locally meets. Despite the rise of new energy technologies, oil and gas will still represent a considerable part of the worlds’ energy mix in the future, stated Mr Birkeland.
The challenges has also met the mine town Kiruna, where the transformation of the city center takes its first steps. The mine company LKAB has unprecedentedly quarried and sold iron ore from Kiruna for many years, and the current town will be affected by the mine in a couple of years. Kiruna will develop into the future because of the city transformation, expounded Mrs Aila Määttä and Mr Joakim Norman from Tekniska Verken of Kiruna presenting plans of the Kiruna 2.0 and the integrated systems creating a Smart City.
Mr Bård Arntsen from Northern Research Institute Narvik described the results how the network on winter concreting in Northern Norway functions. The research program ColdTech focuses on sustainable cold climate technology, for ex. casting rock foundations with promising results. The construction industry is the biggest industry in the north measured by value creation, and therefore it is very important to solve concrete construction problems for arctic climates, said Mr Arntsen.
Mining and metallurgy industries are economically very important to Nordic countries. Mr Magne Leinan from company MLM Utvikling AS advances mining and mineral companies in versatile product development processes. Networking is a useful way to bring about new business outcomes. Therefore, I am looking forward partners for cooperation in servitization, marketing research and business development, told Mr Leinan.