The private sector Initiatives, Models and opportunities towards an integration of the Maghreb will be presented in Barcelona

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11th edition of the North Africa Business Development Forum, in the framework of the Mediterranean Week of Economic Leaders

This year the focus will be on the 25th anniversary of the Arab Maghreb Union (UMA) and with the Kingdom of Morocco as the guest country.

The North Africa Business Development Forum will be held on the 26th of November at Casa Llotja de Mar in Barcelona, the forum is organized by the Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASCAME), the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Navigation of Barcelona and the European Institute of the Mediterranean (IEMEd), in the framework of the Mediterranean Week of Economic Leaders.

The forum will focus on the 25th anniversary of the Arab Maghreb Union (UMA). This Union was founded in 1989 by Heads of State and Government from Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Mauritania and Tunisia, with the objective of creating joint structures for regional cooperation to foster the growth of this area from the free movement of people, goods and capital. Particular attention will be paid to the reflection on the organization and the overcome of the future challenges and the role of the society in this supranational project which has a strategic character for the Union in the Maghreb area.

This 25th anniversary of the Arab Maghreb Union (UMA) session will count on the participation of Director of Foreign Policy for the Mediterranean, Maghreb and the Middle East, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Spain, Manuel Gómez-Acebo; the Director, Economic Affairs Department, Arab Maghreb Union (AMU), Reda El Merini and the Chief Country Economist for North Africa, African Development Bank, Vincent Castel. The keynote will be given by the Head of Mission, Royal Cabinet, Kingdom of Morocco, Youseff Amrani.

This year, the guest country of this forum will be the Kingdom of Morocco, with the presentation: Focus on Morocco, Presentation of the Kingdom of Morocco- A Country in Movement, with the participation of Fadel Benyaich, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco in Spain, as key note speaker of the presentation.
Mr. Benyaich will also deliver a speech about Bilateral Initiative: Economic Council Morocco-Spain (ECMS). The presentation is about the challenges and opportunities of the Moroccan economy.

The Economic Council Morocco- Spain (CEME) was signed in Rabat in 2013 by the CEOE and the CGEM, the General Confederation of Enterprises in Morocco, whose objective is to foster the bilateral cooperation between the business sectors of both countries. Morocco is the first African market in Spain, which means that it is the first commercial partner from the Maghreb. About 800 Spanish companies are working in Morocco.

The final session of this forum will present the Maghrebi Initiative of Commerce and Investment (IMCI), launched by the Maghrebi Entrepreneur Union to strengthen the commercial exchanges between the countries of the region, which had not been intense until now. It consists in a roadmap to foster the economic integration in these countries, where the foreign trade is directly connected to the European Union.

This forum will count on a round table made up of different enterprises such as CaixaBank, Gas Natural, Schneider Electric, Aqualogy, Vueling, Emergia Partners, ACCIÓ, Centre d'Études des Transports pour la Méditerranée Occidentale (CETMO), GEA Barcelona European Consulting S.L.P, Mixta Africa and other important companies and institutions that will participate in the open debate at the end of each session of this forum.

The North Africa Business Development Forum will also count on the collaboration, as media partner, of the leading news agency in Spanish, and fourth largest news agency in the world, EFE; of the online international news magazine focused on Spain and Maghreb for the Mediterranean leaders’ interest ATALAYAR; and the French online publication that delivers real-time, reliable, independent information on the economy in the Mediterranean, ECONOSTRUM.

For further information about ASCAME and the different forums of the Mediterranean Week please don’t hesitate to contact us by e-mail. At or visit

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