On April 5, the United States and Finland signed a Joint Statement on Cooperation in Quantum Information Science and Technology, underscoring both countries’ intent to enhance cooperation in the field. This Statement builds on more than two decades of robust bilateral ties, including a Science and Technology Agreement that has been in place since 1995.
Monica P. Medina, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, signed the joint statement in Washington for the United States. “Quantum information science and technology represents a pathway to a more sustainable future, but these solutions will take time,” said Medina. “I am thrilled to deepen our cooperation with Finland to realize quantum technologies that benefit our economies, our societies, and our planet.”
Ilona Lundström, Director General of the Innovations and Enterprise Financing Department at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment signed the joint statement for Finland. “Quantum technology is one of the revolutionary technologies in which Finland has strong expertise. In order to fully utilize this expertise, we need strong international networks and cooperation,” said Lundström.
Both countries have mobilized resources for quantum information science and technology (QIST) in recent years. In the United States, government action gained momentum following the 2018 National Quantum Initiative, resulting in new policies and programs, including 13 QIST research centers to enable collaborative, multidisciplinary research and the National Q-12 Education Partnership to increase quantum awareness and foster the next generation’s quantum workforce. Similarly, Finland has historic strengths in QIST and QIST-enabling fields such as cryogenic technologies and microwave electronics. Further, in early 2020, Finland’s VTT Technical Research Center announced plans to partner with a Finnish spin-off to acquire the country’s first quantum computer. Intended to be a national resource, the computer has been operational since November 2021.
Charles Tahan, the Assistant Director for Quantum Information Science in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Director of the National Quantum Coordination Office said, “Quantum has always been a global endeavor. The United States and Finland share common goals for accelerating quantum information science and technology development toward applications that will benefit our society. Today’s signing of the United States – Finland quantum cooperation statement is a major step forward toward creating a trusted network of ideas, people, commerce, and values for this critical emerging technology.”
H.E. Mikko Hautala, Ambassador of Finland to the United States said, “Quantum technology has the potential to shape global economy and even global politics. It is crucial that trusted partners, like the United States and Finland, work closely together.”
The Joint Statement will leverage both countries strengths in QIST and QIST-enabling fields to pursue innovative research, grow the future marketplace, build a strong supply chain, and grow the future generation of skills and talent.