Tartu is the centre of Estonia’s medical and biotechnological landscape. The life sciences have an outstanding history at the University of Tartu. Medical sciences have been taught here since its foundation in 1632 by the Swedish King Gustav II Adolf. These long traditions and internationally recognised research in medicine, biotechnology and chemistry continue in Tartu up to the present day. Specialists for the rapidly growing sector are provided by the University of Tartu, Estonian University of Life Sciences and Tartu School of Health Care.

Estonia has undergone remarkable development from a closed country occupied by the Soviet Union to an active partner in the global economy, prone to adopting new technologies. The liberal economic environment, favourable towards entrepreneurship, has fuelled the growth of the Estonian economy. Biotechnology-related legislation in Estonia is well-established and harmonised with EU legislation. The importance of progress in this sector is also recognised by the government as one of the strategic key technologies.
Tartu Biotechnology Park was established in December 2001. Tartu Biotechnology Park provides excellent physical infrastructure as well as business development and consultancy services to companies and R&D institutions in the fields of biotechnology, medicine and veterinary medicine. It supports companies in finding cooperation partners and is active in the establishment process of new companies.
From September 2005 Tartu Biotechnology Park runs the BioMed Incubator for biotechnology, medical and veterinary businesses. The incubator aims to support the formation and sustainable development of enterprises with growth potential.
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Jaanus Pikani e-mail: