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Welcome Niklas Knutsson to CLS

23 August 2019

CLS is happy to welcome to our newest addition, Niklas Knutsson, who will be taking over as Secretary General within short. We feel confident that Niklas background and experience will be a great resource for the Chamber and the Swedish Portuguese relations. Get to know more about Niklas in this article.

Dear Members of the Swedish-Portuguese Chamber of Commerce,

 My name is Niklas Knutsson and I have been elected by the Board of Directors to take over as Secretary-General of CLS from the 1st of October, when current SG Elin Forzelius will be leaving the Chamber. I am very excited to receive this mandate to manage the daily operations of the CLS and will work continuously to strengthen Swedish-Portuguese business relations.

 Portugal is a country to which I have many personal ties. I came to Lisbon for the first time in 2014 to undertake an Erasmus exchange in economics at Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. After finishing my studies at NOVA, I got the opportunity to stay as intern at the Embassy of Sweden in Portugal. This where I met our President, Jennifer Ekström, for the first time as I was frequently included in her work as Trade Commissioner to Portugal, promoting the Swedish Portuguese trade and invest exchanges. After my time at the Embassy, my work and studies took me to Portuguese speaking countries such as Mozambique, Brazil, and I recently graduated from postgraduate studies in Brussels in Economic Diplomacy and International Business. It has been a goal for me to return to Portugal, and Lisbon, as I never stopped coming back for visits, as, like many of our Swedish members, I have become aficionado por Portugal. It is my hope during my executive administrative mandate, that CLS will continue its work to strengthen synergies between our members and the Swedish and Portuguese economies, to promote information-sharing and intercultural skill development to foster and facilitate business opportunities.

 As peripher countries in Europe, as well as being small economies, both Swedish and Portuguese companies need to engage internationally to access large-scale operations. Taking that first step, however, can be difficult for SMEs and that is why organisations like CLS are key players to support the business expansion of their members. In my opinion, the central goal of being a facilitator for Swedish-Portuguese business is to provide activities and a network that generate opportunities that encourage networking and deepen our trade relations. The CLS is a membership organisation and, in my view, the ambition should be to maximize the value associated with this membership for our members. To do this, the CLS will continue to function as a platform that stimulates synergies, as well as providing the means for members to pool their strengths and find common solutions to shared problems or challenges. I will happily receive ideas and suggestions from our members and network for new projects that could strengthen the priorities of this Chamber and our mission.

 As a part of creating more visibility, I would like to further develop and strenghten our Communication Strategy during my mandate, to share trade success within the CLS community and its members. It is my believe our community and the strong ties between Sweden and Portugal has a lot to offer, not only to the Swedish and Portuguese markets but globally. I would, therefore, like to see CLS become more active in sharing the stories of our members and engage with all of you!

 I would like to conclude by saying that I feel very humbled and grateful to take over from my predecessor Elin, who has done a fantastic job for our growth and engagement and wish to carry on her legacy by expanding the activities of the CLS.

 I look forward to getting to meet you all!

 Yours Sincerely,

 Niklas

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