The Mediterranean Logistics and Transport Summit positions regional logistics as a world hub

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Barcelona, 08 June 2016 – The Mediterranean Logistics and Transport Summit has closed today its 14th edition focusing the debate on the unique position of the Mediterranean for logistics and world trade and its disposition to building bridges between the region and other regions and countries worldwide. The Summit organized by the Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASCAME) together with the Consorci de la Zona Franca de Barcelona, in collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce, Services and Navigation of Barcelona, and attended by over 500 participants during the two days, among them, institutional representatives, businessmen, chambers of commerce, investors and entrepreneurs, offered a wide range of sessions focused on the current regional priorities.

In the framework of the International Logistics and Material Handling Exhibition for Trade visitors (SIL 2016), the Mediterranean Logistics and Transport Forum addressed key topics such as the importance of logistics for the regional economic development. In words of Anwar Zibaoui, Coordinator of ASCAME, “To promote the modernization of the Mediterranean infrastructures is vital today for the economic regional integration". For instance, the transport cooperation between the Mediterranean and the Gulf countries becomes crucial for the current regional needs. Also, an improved intermodal transport is key for the connection of the Mediterranean and Europe, asserted Francesco Dionori from the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE).

The Forum also dedicated a special session to the role that logistics can play in the provision of goods and services in the refugees’ camps. “To help refugees, we need to bring products and to distribute them; we need efficient infrastructure networks", affirmed Eduardo Llano of the United Nations Refugees Agency (UNHCR). “Undoubtedly, there is a gap in the humanitarian material supply where the companies have its space", added Barbara Diaz of Red Cross.

In parallel, the 9th Mediterranean Ports Forum highlighted the privileged position of the Mediterranean region with over 450 ports and covering 30% of world maritime trade. Chinese companies in the sector are already investing in the largest maritime projects of the region, explained Roger Albinyana, Director of IEmed's Euro-Mediterranean Policies. The challenge now is to improve the modernization, connectivity and efficiency of Mediterranean ports, as the President of the Port of Barcelona, Sixte Cambra, appointed.

The Suez Canal in Egypt and the Panama Canal have potential complementarities in terms of jobs creation and investments promotion as appointed by the Ambassador of Panama, Mercedes de la Guardia, and the Admiral Abdelkader from the National Authority of the Suez Canal Economic Zone.

The Summit demonstrated, one more year, that the Mediterranean is not only one of the zones with most investment opportunities, but also the epicenter of logistics and logistics trade and world transport. The Mediterranean has building bridges and hundreds of executives and businessmen of the sector from the Mediterranean, Europe, Gulf, China and Latin America have discovered the opportunities the region offers them. As the same President of ASCAME, Mohamed Choucair declared, this Summit is not only useful for the logistics sector, but also for the regional and international economy activity.


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