UfMS hosts the Deauville Partnership Senior Officials Meeting under the Japanese G7 Presidency which highlights the importance of promoting synergies between the UfM and Deauville Partnership frameworks.
Barcelona, 22 November 2016. As an observer to the Deauville Process, the Union for the Mediterranean today hosted the second Deauville Partnership Senior Officials meeting, organised under the 2016 Japanese Presidency of the G7.
With participation from both governance and finance tracks as well as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the main focus of the meeting was to discuss the progress made on economic governance strategic support for SMEs and future activities. The promotion of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in the Arab Countries in Transition (ACT) is an important pillar of the partnership in view of their potential for job creation and stability in the region.
Japan reviewed the progress made under its Presidency in 2016, reaffirming the importance of continuous consultations and cooperation among G7 Member States, regional partners and relevant international organisations to provide essential support to ACT. The Japanese presidency stated that an international symposium on the promotion of women’s public and socio-economic role in the MENA region will be organised on 12th December 2016 in Tokyo, Japan.
UfM Secretary General Fathallah Sijilmassi underlined the importance of the regional dimension and the need to promote synergies between the Union for the Mediterranean and Deauville Partnership frameworks. He highlighted in particular that “economic reforms and financial support will be key to surmounting current regional challenges and seizing opportunities. Focusing on high-impact and quality project and policy dialogue in the activities promoted across the region requires financial resources and a collective effort.”
Participants at the meeting underlined the importance of the MENA Transition Fund as a key tool in supporting ACT efforts towards structural reform. The participants welcomed pledges and donors’ collective efforts and commitments to the Fund, successfully completing the G7 goal of bringing the Fund to $250 million.
Italy, which will take over the G7 Presidency as of January 2017, laid out its future engagements and priorities as regards the MENA Transition Fund and the future work of the Deauville Partnership.