AmCham Sweden celebrated the first America Day Almedalen, appropriately enough on the Fourth of July, with a full day of sessions that focused on some of the key issues our members deem critical to business success.
U.S. Ambassador Azita Raji got America Day underway by ringing the Nasdaq opening bell, and later joined us to speak about fostering innovation.
The first session of the day was devoted to the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) agreement, and what it would mean for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
The conversation with Christina Sevilla, Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative; Maria Åsenius, Head of Cabinet for Cecilia Malmström; Magnus Larsson, Svenskt Näringsliv SME Committee; and Fredrik Ringquist, Mannheimer Swartling, updated the audience on the state of play of the negotiations, and shed light on many of the misconceptions and myths surrounding the negotiations. The next session, masterfully moderated by Magnus Aronsson of ESBRI, addressed innovations that leverage big data and analytics to deliver more affordable healthcare to more people around the world - all while achieving unprecedented outcomes. The speakers addressed how digitalization is driving innovation in life science and business generally, and what is needed to foster the markets, products, and services of tomorrow.
Hans Enocson, President and CEO of GE for the Nordic countries described industrial transformation, and Martin Ingvar, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Future Medical Services at Karolinska Institutet, spoke about technical as well as semantic interoperability in the future healthcare environment. Following these remarks, Magnus led an insightful panel discussion with Lars Näslund of 3M, Malin Parkler of Pfizer, Amir Hefni of Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Jacob Tellgren of MSD.
Later, we turned to successful strategies to foster innovation with U.S. Ambassador Azita Raji and Susan Windham-Bannister, Immediate Past President and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center who spoke about the objectives of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative, the strategy for its implementation, and why it works. Anders Lönnberg, Life Science Coordinator for the Prime Minister, described ongoing activities in the Swedish Life Science sector. These presentations were followed by a panel discussion expertly moderated by Carolina Wallenius, Head of Nordics at GE Healthcare Partners.
As the U.S. Election takes shape this summer, Mikael Törnwall of Hill + Knowlton Strategies moderated as Bob Gilchrist, Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy provided an overview of what might be the most closely watched Presidential contest in recent history. A panel of speakers consisting of Marcus Oscarsson TV 4, David Landes from The Local, and Elizabeth Walentin of Crimson Clarke discussed the Swedish media’s coverage of the race, and Eirik Winter, Managing Director, Head of Investment Banking & Chairman, Nordic Region for Citi offered insights into the global economic and foreign policy implications.
We rounded out the day with a compelling discussion of data, which has been variously described as the oil and currency of the 21st century. Fredrik Erixon, the Director of the European Centre For International Political Economy, led an expert panel in a discussion on data flows and the Digital Single Market with Ulf Pehrsson of Ericsson, Jan Gulliksen, Chairman of the Swedish Digitalization Commission, and Anders Bergsten from Mannheimer Swartling.
On Tuesday, July 5, building on the success of the “Together Against Corruption (http://www.tillsammansmotkorruption.se)” initiative launched at Almedalen last year, we again co-hosted a full day of panels with Institutet Mot Mutor (IMM) and Transparency International Sverige. This was a day full of best practice sharing and inspirational examples in the fight to end corruption and foster a more sustainable environment for businesses operating in Sweden and elsewhere.
For the remainder of the week, the team from AmCham Sweden attended member seminars and numerous panel debates on key issues, met with members, potential members, and key stakeholders. We also participated in roundtables and seminars on issues as diverse as chemical taxation and preclearance at Arlanda Airport.