MEDITERRANEAN. At the very centre of economic cooperation in the Mediterranean, Marseille sees four key local organisations join forces to become the locomotive of the new Pole Med: Acim (Agency for international cooperation and local development in the Mediterranean), Anima Investment Network, Finances & Conseil Méditerranée (FCM) and Imed (Ingénierie Méditerranéenne pour l'export et le développement). "Marseille positions itself as the capital for the development of a major Euro-Mediterranean policy. During the latest edition of the Mediterranean Economic Week we felt a surge in interest for cooperation between northern and southern regions. The Region could not simply remain a bystander " announced Patrick Allemand, 1st Vice-President of the Regional Council of Provence-Alpes Côte d'Azur (PACA).
Within the framework of the Regional Plan for the Internationalisation of Businesses (PRIE), PACA is looking to promote the international development initiatives of businesses through the targeting of territories. Pole Med will be focusing on the Mediterranean region. The consortium will act as a services-provider platform for internationalisation and cooperation initiatives and benefit from the experience and legitimacy of the four member-organisations. Designed for businesses and clusters alike, Pole Med will facilitate the pooling of efforts to develop cooperation through namely the multiplication of partnerships between the north and south.
The regional innovation and internationalisation agency which will see the light of day in April 2014, will coordinate and assess the new structure which brings together but in no way replaces the founding organisations which shall continue to operate independently.
Businesses, the first to benefit from the Pole Med services
According to Bernard Morel, Vice-President of the Regional Council of Provence-Alpes Côte d’Azur for Employment, Economic Development, Higher Education, Research and Innovation, "Pole Med represents a key element in the creation of a service offer for local firms". For Patrick Allemand: “Yesterday, we had a number of organisations all acting independently to support businesses, today we have economic cooperation led by Pole Med. We need a form of coherence to establish a major Euro-Mediterranean policy."
For the 1st Vice-President of the PACA Region, “the demand in France and the Maghreb exists. Now such an organisation can help our SMEs looking to develop into the Mediterranean."
By promoting the efforts already made by its members, Pole Med becomes the region’s spearhead for operations in Mediterranean countries. Other organisations may be tempted to join too.
"The Region encouraged the establishment of this pole to coordinate the different actions. Pole Med shall propose a master plan for economic cooperation in the Mediterranean through an effective strategy focusing on such sectors as water, electricity, transport and also tourism" added Bernard Morel.