Friday 3 August 2018. The Secretary General of the UfM, Nasser Kamel, has visited Tunisia this week following an invitation by the Tunisian authorities. He was received by the Prime Minister, Youssef Chahed.
Mr. Chahed, who reaffirmed his support to the work of the Union for the Mediterranean and conveyed the message that the cooperation in the Mediterranean is essential in order to strengthen ties among the countries and the peoples of the region. The UfM Secretary General stressed that Tunisia, by virtue of its geostrategic position and its close ties with key regional partners, is at the heart of any project bearing the name of the Mediterranean.
Secretary General Nasser Kamel was also received by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Khemaies Jhinaoui, with whom he had the chance to talk about some of the 39 UfM projects implemented in Tunisia, such as the Bizerte Lake Depollution Project, as well as the upcoming Regional Forum of the Union for the Mediterranean, which will take place in Barcelona on October 8th.
The Secretary General also met the Minister of Social Affairs, Mohamed Trabelsi, with whom he discussed, among other things, the regional project MedNC, which addresses the challenge of socio-professional integration of young people and in particular those youngsters who are not in Education, Employment, or Training (NEETs). The Minister has highlighted the importance of the action of the UfM for the access of young people to the labor market. They discussed as well the important matter of diasporas, the role they play on investments and their impact for the development of the countries of origin.
Finally, the Secretary General held talks with Riadh Mouakhar, Minister of Local Affairs and Environment, and Neziha Labidi, Minister for Woman, Family and Childhood.
Ms. Labidi stressed the need to intensify coordination among the countries of the Mediterranean in order to promote the status of women and further strengthen their rights. She highlighted national efforts to promote women’s active participation in political life and economic empowerment, reviewing the various programs, plans and mechanisms developed by Tunisia in this field.
Echoing with this regional priority, the UfM will organise the fourth edition of the Women Conference in Lisbon, which is expected to gather more than 300 high level stakeholders from all sectors involved in gender equality and women’s empowerment in the Euro-Mediterranean region.