3 July, Barcelona.– Gathering for the second UfM Senior Official’s Meeting (SOM) of 2017, the representatives of the UfM Member States met in Barcelona to discuss the challenges and opportunities in the the Euro-Mediterranean region and the ongoing projects and initiatives of the UfM Secretariat.
UfM Senior Officials held an in depth exchange under their political dialogue on several issues of political importance for the stability of the region.
They also took stock of the various sectorial UfM Ministerial Meetings held during the first half of the year, notably in the areas of water and sustainable urban development, and discussed preparations for the upcoming Ministerial Meeting on women’s empowerment, due to take place next November in Cairo. Following the adoption by the Member States of the new UfM Roadmap for Action last January in Barcelona, the UfM Senior Officials also exchanged views to further advance regional integration by creating effective links between the policy dimension and its operational translation into concrete projects and activities on the ground.
UfM Senior Officials exchanged on four new region-wide cooperation project proposals submitted by the UfM Secretariat to be presented for UfM labeling in the coming months. These four projects aim to facilitate access to employment, support entrepreneurship and SMEs development, promote climate transparency to help contribute to the Paris Agreement, and provide multimodal training to help build an efficient, interoperable and sustainable transport infrastructure network in the Mediterranean region.
The Delegate of the the Spanish Government to Catalunya, Mr. Enric Millo, and Mr. Javier Villamayor, Deputy Major of Tarragona and Commissioner of the Tarragona 2018 Mediterranean Games, took part in the meeting to brief the UfM country representatives on the 2018 Mediterranean Games, set to take place in Tarragona from 22 June to 1 July, 2018.
The members of the Union for the Mediterranean meet on a regular basis at the level of Senior Officials from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the 43 UfM countries, EU institutions and the League of Arab States. The Senior Officials Meetings (SOM) provide the framework to discuss the current political context and coordinate the work of the UfM Secretariat. They approve the budget and work programme of the Secretariat and set the basis to prepare the Ministerial Meetings. They also discuss the project proposals submitted for approval and endorsement. The Senior Officials of the UfM always take decisions by consensus.