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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

grand harbor of valletta malta

Four Mediterranean sovereign wealth funds join forces to make co-investments

Source: Econostrum
Date: 29 March 2022
Four Mediterranean countries have launched a foundation of sovereign wealth funds from Europe, the Middle East and North Africa on Tuesday 29 March 2022 in Malta. The idea was born during the Med 7 Summit in 2019 in Malta from a discussion between the French President and the Maltese Prime Minister. It is now taking shape with a signature between Malta Government Investments (MGI) – which led the work to set it up – the French public investment bank and The Sovereign Fund of Egypt (TSFE).

“This network of sovereign wealth funds in the region will discuss and share co-investment opportunities,”commented Herald Bonnici, Managing Director of MGI.

The Compañía Española de Financiación del Desarrollo (COFIDES) has also initialled a memorandum of understanding with these three SWFs to become a member of this new network which will be based in Malta. “They are currently key financial players thanks to their stabilising role through medium and long-term investment strategies. COFIDES is also an active member of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF) and the One Planet Sovereign Wealth Funds network,” says José-Luis Curbelo, President of COFIDES.

Read the full article on the econostrum website
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

front cover transition pathway for tourism report

EC Transition pathway for tourism published

Source: EC.europa.eu website
Date: February 4, 2022

Following the 2021 Updated Industrial Strategy and given the many challenges faced by the tourism industry and the major impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tourism ecosystem was the first industrial ecosystem to work on a transition pathway.

The extensive stakeholders co-creation process began in June 2021 with a targeted consultation on possible scenarios for transition. Altogether over 30 workshops and meetings were held with stakeholders to further brainstorm and elaborate the ideas.

The transition pathway identifies 27 areas of measures for the green and digital transition, and for improving the resilience of EU tourism. It calls for more circular and environmentally friendly services in tourism, enhancing data sharing for more innovative services, and improving accessibility of services, among others.

During a tourism-dedicated spotlight event on 8 February, during the EU industry days, the Commission and stakeholders will discuss the transition pathway and the next co-implementation steps.

Document

Transition pathway for tourism

rusty can on sandy sea floor

Combating marine litter in the Mediterranean through an integrated and strategic management approach : launch of the Plastic Busters CAP project

Source: UfM secretariat
Date: 27 January 2022

Marine litter, the vast majority of which is made of plastics, is globally acknowledged as a major environmental and societal challenge of our time. The Mediterranean is one of the most affected seas by marine litter with more than 130 marine species are affected by debris originating primarily from shoreline activities.

The new project “Plastic Busters CAP:Fostering knowledge transfer to tackle marine litter in the Mediterranean” kicked off today under the umbrella of the UfM initiative “Plastic Busters”, to become an instrument to improve Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM), resulting in better local development planning.

Read the full article here

westmed sttering committee meeting in Rome november 8. 2021

Malta, together with Libya, takes over the WestMED Initiative’s Co-Presidency

After two years of intensive work, Italian and Libyan Co-Presidency representatives hand over the WestMED Co-Presidency to Malta

The 14th WestMED Steering Committee (WMSC) meeting took place on November 8, 2021, in the premises of the Italian Villa Farnesina (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), and online. The meeting provided the opportunity for the WMSC to evaluate the implementation of the initiative, as well as to reflect on the outcomes of the outgoing Italian-Libyan co-presidency, and on introducing the future Maltese-Libyan co-presidency.

As main outcomes, Daniele Bosio (Italian WestMED Co-Presidency) presented a stock-taking of the last two years of intensive work  – which concentrated on 3 thematic areas: green shipping, clusters and aquaculture -, and welcomed the new Maltese Co-Presidency with a message of encouragement.

The representative of the Ministry of Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects, Ebejer Shaun Patrick, lead coordinator in Malta when it comes to Integrated Maritime Policy, shared the approach to the work to be carried out in conjunction with Libyan partners during the incoming Maltese Co-Presidency.

The main message presented was that of continuation with the “excellent work carried out so far, through the development of concrete measures and mechanisms to help promote the Blue Economy vision and boost worldwide competitiveness of the Mediterranean”. According to the Maltese representatives, “this vision needs to be based on a framework which supports all the states involved, and takes into consideration the specificities of the whole region”.

The new Maltese-Libyan Co-Presidency outlined their priorities for the next two years, including:

  • Decarbonisation and greening of the maritime transport sector
  • Sustainable fishing and aquaculture development
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Maritime clusters
  • Ocean literacy and Blue Skills

The WMSC includes national coordinators from the relevant ministries from participating countries (France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Malta, Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia), the European Commission and the Union for the Mediterranean Secretariat, as well as observers from International Organizations and financial institutions. Their role is to ensure operational coordination, guidance and necessary support to ensure the initiative’s expected results are achieved.

EMD in my country poster

Bring European Maritime Day to your country – submit your maritime event for EU promotional support: deadline 15 February 2022

EMD 2022, the annual EU meeting point on maritime affairs and sustainable blue growth, and the place where ‘Ocean Leaders Meet’, will take place in Ravenna, Italy on 19 & 20 May 2022. As every year, this will not be the only action to celebrate our seas and oceans. EMD In My Country 2022 events will also take place all over Europe from 1 April till 31 October 2022.

In 2021, ‘EMD In My Country’ – despite the pandemic – was a great success, with 232 virtual, physical and hybrid events, organised in 25 countries (21 EU and 4 non-EU countries), covering all the sea basins of the EU making an absolute record in the history of the European Maritime Day!

Are you ready to submit your event(s) for 2022?

Fill in the application form before 15 February 2022 and bring European Maritime Day 2022 to your country.

All the organisers will receive sustainable #EMD In My Country-branded gadgets and their events will be promoted via the Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries’ information channels.

As the COVID-19 pandemic is not yet over, EMD In My Country 2022 will include physical, virtual and hybrid events that will take place from 1 April to 31 October 2022.

2022 will be the European Year of Youth, so we welcome plenty of events with a focus on youth activities.

Submit your application

Deadline: 15 February 2022.

screenshot article with headline

Mediterranean Supports ECA with Strict Sulfur Limits by 2025

Source: maritime-executive.com website
Date: December 13, 2021

The EU, together with countries from around the Mediterranean Sea, committed to further efforts to protect the environment around the Mediterranean, including moving to become a sulfur emissions control zone. By 2025, the Mediterranean could become the fourth emissions control area joining Northern Europe in the efforts to mandate the use of low sulfur marine fuels.

The decision came as part of a meeting of the members of the 25-year-old UN Barcelona Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean. The convention, which was first adopted in 1976, includes 22 parties with the EU and eight EU Mediterranean member states as well as cooperation from countries around the Mediterranean.

At the conclusion of last week’s meeting, the group voted to support the designation of a sulfur emissions control area (ECA) in the whole region. A broad range of NGOs had long been advocated for the action. Under the language accepted by the signatories of the convention, ships steaming through the Mediterranean would only use fuels containing low sulfur. It calls for a much stricter standard of just 0.1 percent versus the global standard and 0.5 percent sulfur levels presently.

 

Read the full article on the maritime-executive website