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presenters at table discussing during westmed national event in Naples 2022

A new Blue Economy support ecosystem proposed during Italy’s WestMED National Event in Naples

Within the beautiful setting of the new museum Darwin Dohrn in Naples, on May 26th and 27th 2022, the WestMED National Coordinators and the National Hubs organized the Italian ‘WestMED in my country’ event: “Blue Accelerators & Incubators: the main challenge for Blue Growth in Italy”.

With the practical support of Cluster Tecnologico Nazionale Blue Italian Growth and Federazione del Mare, the endorsement of the Department of Cohesion within the Presidency of Council of Ministers and of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this was also recognized as an official EMD in my country 2022 event.

It was opened with speeches from the Mayor of Naples, Gaetano Manfredi (former Dean of the University Federico II) and the Regional Counsellor for Research, Innovation and Start-ups of the Campania Region, Valeria Fascione.

Based on a structural gap in the Italian Blue Economy ecosystem, the idea proposed was implementing a national supply chain of support for innovation, new entrepreneurship and employability, based on an alliance that consists of Maritime Clusters, Accelerators & Incubators and Investors & Fund Managers (public & private).

Such a supply chain could facilitate and expedite the search for partners & financial resources by the promoters of a Blue Economy initiative, while national and regional maritime clusters could help mitigate the risks taken by investors and accelerators/ incubators. They could do so by helping to identify the most deserving and really innovative initiatives.

This two-day event gave the opportunity for Italian stakeholders to:

  • become further acquainted with the WestMED Initiative activities in Italy and in the sub-basin over the last four years;
  • become aware of the strategic agreement among the two national maritime clusters (proposed and supported by the WestMED National Coordinators and Italian National Hub) and the excellent results already achieved;
  • network and meet, (Italian and foreign) representatives in-person from over 50 clusters, accelerators and incubators, venture capital companies, start-ups, research institutes, EU platforms, EU funds managing authorities.

More than 70 experts and professionals from the whole country joined in-person with an average of 40 participants who followed  the event online.

To complement the programme,  the visitors were treated to a guided tour of the museum by Prof Ferdinando Boero, who described the 150 years history of Stazione Anton Dohrn where he highlighted the significant contribution of the two scientists Dohrn and Darwin to marine zoology and their studies preserved in this museum, as well as drawing attention to the Gulf of Naples, as being the richest marine biodiversity site

All participants who joined in-person, received a free conference kit.

As a follow-up, the WestMED National Coordinators and Italian National  Hub are already undertaking the steps subsequent to the opportunities that emerged during this event.

For further info, contact Leonardo Mazari (National Hub Italy) : italy@westmed-initiative.eu

 

Tunisia national event 2022 - partner contract signing

Lancement de l’Economie Bleue en Tunisie avec la signature d’un accord de partenariat entre le Cluster Maritime Tunisien et l’Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer

Le Hub National Tunisie du projet WestMED a organisé, le 2 juin 2022 à Tunis, l’évènement national sur « L’économie bleue en Tunisie ». Plus de 80 personnes ont assisté à cet événement dont Mme Asma shiri Labidi, la ministre chargée du Secrétariat Général de la Mer, des représentants de l’administration, des entreprises aussi bien publiques que privées, des associations et des universitaires et chercheurs.

A l’ouverture des travaux, et après la présentation du projet WestMed par le Hub National Tunisie, la ministre a affirmé une volonté politique nationale pour développer l’économie bleue en Tunisie et que son département a soumis au gouvernement un document retraçant la stratégie à entreprendre et un plan d’actions pour les trois prochaines années 2023-2025.

Elle a fait un aperçu détaillé des différentes activités de l’économie bleue en mettant l’accent sur les objectifs et les priorités pour chaque secteur. La ministre a insisté sur la coordination entre les différents départements au niveau national mais aussi sur la coopération à l’échelle internationale et notamment méditerranéenne.  Prenant la parole le Coordinateur National du projet a souligné l’importance du projet Westmed et de son approche de réunir les différents acteurs de l’économie bleue autour de différents thèmes afin de débattre des différentes difficultés et d’augmenter la coordination entre eux. Il a insisté sur l’importance de la coopération internationale notamment avec l’Union Européenne dans ce domaine.

Le Hub National a rappelé que la première partie de l’événement est consacrée au rôle des groupes techniques Westmed dans la création d’une dynamique de réflexion des secteurs prometteurs. Il a fait une présentation sur la création de ces groupes, leurs objectifs et priorités et la nécessité de renforcer la coopération entre les deux rives de la méditerranée dans ces domaines. Les représentants tunisiens dans ces groupes ont fait des communications détaillées sur le transport propre, l’aquaculture durable, les clusters et le tourisme alternatif. Le débat était riche et tournait autour du choix des différentes énergies de substitution au fioul lourd dans le transport propre et des coûts d’adaptation de la flotte et des infrastructures.

La nécessité de garantir la croissance équilibrée d’une aquaculture durable étant donné l’inexistence d’un MSP et de l’impact des déchets des poissons sur l’environnement. Les opérateurs du tourisme et notamment de la plaisance ont insisté sur la baisse de l’activité suite au Covid19 et le retard dans la reprise de cette activité et ont insisté sur la nécessité de l’entretien de l’infrastructure des ports de plaisance.

La deuxième partie de l’événement était consacrée à l’économie bleue solidaire, à la recherche et innovation en biotechnologie bleue comme source d’opportunité pour les entreprises, aux défis et perspectives de l’industrialisation de la pêche et de l’aquaculture et aux méthodes et outils pour un aménagement durable du littoral. Le débat était animé et concernait notamment la nécessité des réformes institutionnelles pour faciliter la synergie entre la recherche scientifique et le secteur industriel et résoudre le problème de cloisonnement entre eux et d’ouvrir ces instituts de recherches sur leur environnement et sur les préoccupations des opérateurs et la résolution de leurs problèmes.

Les participants ont insisté sur l’inexistence d’un MSP et d’une GIZC est de nature à créer des conflits entre les opérateurs et à encourager le développement spontané des différentes activités ce qui engendrerait une dégradation du littoral.

L’événement national sur l’économie bleue était l’occasion de la signature d’un accord de partenariat entre le Cluster Maritime Tunisien et l’Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer.

 

national event tunisia-2022 - salem miladi presenting

 

 

report cover Blue Economy report 2022

The EU Blue Economy report 2022: ocean economy fuels European green transition

The European Commission has published its annual EU Blue Economy Report to take stock and uncover the latest trends and developments in all economic sectors related to the oceans and coastal areas. With close to 4.5 million people employed, a turnover of more than €665 billion and €184 billion in gross value added, the EU blue economy sectors contribute significantly to the EU’s economy, especially in the coastal regions. Moreover, the report notes that the EU’s blue sectors are a spawning ground for innovative solutions and technologies that can help fight climate change and take the green transition to the next level. It also points at the high cost of inaction to fight climate change, as the damage of rising sea levels could cause a direct loss of more than €200 billion per year by 2080 in the EU.

More information here

Download the report here

 

 

people meeting at event bridging the gap in Malta 2022

Bridging the Maritime Skills Gap. Succesful WestMED event helps identify possible solutions in Malta

Today the WestMED Initiative (Malta) in collaboration with the Malta Maritime Forum organised an event entitled “Blue Skills: Bridging the Skills Gap through Education and Ocean Literacy”.

The event was successful in bringing together the views of the captains of industry and academia who identified skills shortages and possible solutions to the skills gap shortages that are afflicting the industry.

The event sought to strengthen cooperation between all stakeholders in order to address labour market frictions that hamper employers from their much-needed talent and skills that sustain their business models.

Moreover the event also focused on the important role of ocean literacy in order to bridge the gap highlighting the importance of engaging youths, students as well as NGOs within the industry.

The work conducted by the Union for the Mediterranean on blue skills was also presented in the event and colleagues from the Atlantic Assistance Mechanism presented the work conducted on blue skills and ocean literacy in the Atlantic.

The event was purposely timed to coincide with Maritime Day and enjoyed official recognition as a ‘European Maritime Day (EMD) In My Country’.

Besides key industry and academia representatives, other participants in the event included the Hon Aaron Farrugia, Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects; the Hon Ivan Castillo, Shadow Minister for the Maritime Sector; Perit Karmenu Vella, former European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries; and Mr Joseph Bugeja, Chairperson and CEO of Transport Malta.

More information: contact Stephanie Vella or Annabel Vella at our WestMED National Hub Malta

euromed academy

E-Learning program launched: “Fostering and managing Blue growth Potential in the Mediterranean

Source: Interreg Mediterranean-Blue Growth

In the context of the INTERREG EURO-MED Academy, the Blue Growth Community is launching the next 16th of May 2022, the online programme “Fostering and Managing Blue Growth Potential in the Mediterranean ».

This e-learning programme is addressed to the next Generation of Mediterranean Leaders on Inclusive and Sustainable Development both from the Northern and Southern shores. This entails a very wide audience having a direct relation to the Blue Growth sector, from young people involved in the blue economy governance to young entrepreneurs and practitioners working in business support organizations (BSOs), NGOs, research institutions, etc.

Therefore, all stakeholders coming from the public/private sectors and civil society interested on Blue Growth will have the opportunity to benefit of this free learning programme that offers a global coverage of all thematic areas of Blue Economy.

Using different training tools such as 7,5h of pre-recorded lectures, available side material for studying (documents, videos, links, etc.), assessment tools (short tests and an exercise), one live webinar and a final event (with key-note speeches and selected presentations of the participants and students), this programme will offer:

  • Modules: 10 short modules structures in the following thematic:
    1. Potential of Blue Economy in the Mediterranean
    2. Marine Renewable Energy (1st part)
    3. Marine Renewable Energy (2nd part)
    4. Sustainable Tourism
    5. Greening the Ports
    6. Fisheries & Aquaculture
    7. Unlocking the potential of Blue Bioeconomy through biotechnologies
    8. Maritime Security & Maritime Surveillance
    9. Maritime Spatial Planning
    10. How to reconcile Blue Economy and Marine Environmental protection

 

  • Course duration: 5 weeks (recommended)

 

Through a dedicated section under each Module, the participants will have the opportunity to overview innovative results and tools produced by the projects of the Blue Growth Community and beyond.

The Blue Growth Community e-learning program “Fostering and Managing Blue Growth Potential in the Mediterranean” will take place from the 16th of May to the 11th of July 2022.

Find more information here.

ENROL NOW!

 

 

underwater ray of light

Survey for Nautical Companies to Understand Potential of Innovative Marine Robotics

Blue Roses is an EU funded project, developed by a consortium of research institutions and companies (Navigo and Aninver – IMC Worldwide among them), to use state-of-the-art marine robotics to develop innovative and sustainable underwater services for marinas and leisure boats.

The aim of the project is to facilitate access to the underwater environment through the use of Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) and associated ICT. This ‘new dimension’ will help marinas attract and grow interest from diversified users. The robots can be used in a variety of functions, including yacht hull monitoring, remote access to underwater sites, monitoring of sea beds and many other applications.
The three scenarios considered by the project, in which we seek to identify and analyze innovative services and business models, are:
1. Remote access to naturalistic and/or cultural underwater sites (Pilot 1)
2. Robotic-based waters and seabed monitoring inside marinas (Pilot 2)
3. Robotic-based monitoring of yacht hulls for security and support to refit and dismantling

This survey is part of the research to understand the potential of innovative marine robotics services and business models. Your collaboration is highly appreciated. Your personal data will only be used for statistical purposes and none of the consortium members will store or further use this information.

Take me to the survey here

Salem Miladi at radio IFM

Salem Miladi (WestMED National Hub Tunisia) talks about the Blue Economy on National Radio IFM

On Saturday April 16, 2022 Salem Miladi from the WestMED National Hub in Tunisia was invited by Radio IFM; a popular national commercial radio station in Tunisia. In the program L’univers Marin,’ hosted by Wael Beji,  he was interviewed for 50 minutes  about the blue economy, the WestMED initiative and the situation in Tunisia with its main opportunities and challenges for blue growth.

There was a lot of response after the show – including high viewership of the recording on YouTube.  It was also referenced to in a follow-up meeting with  Secretary of State for the Sea, Asma S’hiri Laabidi who agreed to open the Tunisian WestMED National Event on June 2 by announcing the Tunisian government’s commitment to promote the blue economy and present the first elements of the Blue Economy Strategy

You can watch the full recording here  (in Arabic)

Interreg Euro-MED poster

Interreg EuroMed, the WestMED Initiative and the UfM team up for a joint info session on opportunities for southern partners

The main objective of the Euro-MED Programme 2021-27  is  contributing to the transition towards a climate-neutral and resilient society: fighting against global challenges that negatively impact Mediterranean resources, while ensuring a sustainable growth and the well-being of its citizens.

This ultimate goal brings together many actors in the Mediterranean and a single programme can not address it alone. Only coordinating all efforts can provide real impact.

Liaising activities are aimed to build strong, long-term collaborative relationships. These are not just about networking activities, but about structured exchanges in a spirit of open cooperation to achieve shared goals.

Following the frame of activities build under the Results Amplification Strategy, the Euro-MED Programme 2021-27 and the WestMED Initiative agreed that the territories would greatly benefit from coming together and taking coordinated actions where possible. This was underlined by the cooperation agreement between the westMED Initiative and the EuroMed-Programme that was presented during the WestMED Stakeholder Conference on 9 November 2021 in Rome.

As a result, the Interreg Euro-MED Programme, the WestMED Initiative and the Union for Mediterranean will organise an Info session on « How to be part of Interreg Euro-Med? », that will be held the 26th April from 10.00 to 11.30, aimed specifically at the Southern partners in order to explain the Programme and the role they could play in the projects.

The meeting will be the occasion for WestMed and UfM stakeholders to discover how they can participate in the Interreg Euro-Med projects, by sharing sharing expertise on common issues in the Mediterranean and benefit from the fruits of this collaboration.

Aquaculture - screenshot from article on

Vers l’élaboration d’un nouveau modèle de production halieutique en Algérie

Source: Algérie Presse Service
Date: 31 Mars 2022

ALGER -Le ministre de la Pêche et des productions halieutiques, Hicham Sofiane Salaouatchi a affirmé, jeudi à Alger, que l’Algérie aspire à élaborer un nouveau modèle de production halieutique, basé essentiellement sur l’aquaculture et la pêche en haute mer.

Lors d’une séance de l’APN consacrée aux questions orales, M. Salaouatchi a souligné que le secteur œuvre à élargir et à généraliser l’aquaculture à court et moyen termes, et aspire à long terme à s’orienter vers la pêche en haute mer.

Répondant à la question du député Kamel El Korichi (indépendant) sur la production halieutique en Algérie, basée à 95% sur la production marine, contre 5% seulement pour les produits de l’aquaculture, le ministre a affirmé que l’augmentation de la moyenne de production de cette filière permettra de garantir d’importantes quantités, et partant de baisser les prix du poisson.

Il a ajouté, dans ce contexte, que son secteur œuvrait « de concert » avec le ministère délégué chargé de la Mirco entreprise à encourager et à orienter les jeunes vers l’aquaculture, citant le lancement de l’opération d’octroi de 1000 micro-crédits dans le cadre de l’ANGEM et 1000 autres crédits accordés par l’Agence nationale d’appui et de développement de l’entrepreneuriat (ANADE).

En lire plus

screenshot front cover tourism handbook

Social and economic regeneration of the Mediterranean after the crisis: Shared methods and tools for relaunching a sustainable post COVID-19 tourism model

Source: UfM website
Date:  15 March 2022

Development dynamics and trends in the Mediterranean, as in the rest of the world, have suffered a severe slowdown since 2020. In many cases, they have taken the form of a sharp reversal following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the social and economic crisis that has ensued. The pandemic crisis has weakened economic sectors that are considered vulnerable as they are more than others influenced by different variables. The Mediterranean basin and the countries of the three continents bordering it have not been spared by the crisis, and in this context one of the hardest hit sectors has been tourism.

Consequently, many of the measures adopted by national governments have focused, on the one hand, on income support for workers in the tourism sector and, on the other, on support mechanisms for the activities linked to the sector (directly or indirectly). At the same time, many Mediterranean countries, especially within the framework of multilateral and supranational initiatives, have been preparing recovery plans to tackle the post-pandemic phase and beyond.

Read the full article and download the report