Barcelona, 31 October 2014. The UfM participated in the 14th Facility for Euro-Mediterranean Investment and Partnership (FEMIP) Conference, entitled “Tools for growth: Driving investment in the Mediterranean region”. It was organised by the European Investment Bank (EIB) and held in Naples, Italy on 30 October 2014.
The year 2014 marks the beginning of a new period of EU cooperation with the Mediterranean partner countries and the EIB is to invest around EUR 10 billion in the region over the next seven years. As presented in the Bank’s Roadmap for the Mediterranean, endorsed at the Athens Ministerial Meeting in April 2014, the EIB will use this period to further strengthen its activities as the region’s large-scale financier, supporting long-term investments in both the public and private sectors.
As the partner countries seek to identify and take advantage of new opportunities for growth against a challenging political, social and economic backdrop, the 14th FEMIP Conference provided an overview of the financial tools available to the Mediterranean countries, where both financing and technical expertise are needed to move forward with projects and investments.
UfM Secretary General, Fathallah Sijilmassi, who participated as a speaker in the opening session, entitled “What vision for the Mediterranean?”, stated that “The UfM Secretariat will continue to work hand-in-hand with the EIB to support blending partnerships for project financing and to disseminate any new instruments that are made available for project promoters”.
He stressed the need to design a coordinated set of actions between governments, IFIs, international organisations and business associations in order to implement effective actions towards private sector and SME development as the best means of boosting growth and employment in the region. He also welcomed the existing initiatives aimed at enhancing coordination between international partners and existing fora in the region and highlighted the need to ensure that governments, as well as other stakeholders from both the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean, are called on to participate and contribute in order to move these initiatives forward.