• October 14th, 2022

40 years bringing the two shores closer together and promoting the Mediterranean worldwide  

1000 economic and business representatives from all over the world accompany ASCAME

  • Representatives from all over the world have gathered in Egypt to celebrate the 40th anniversary of ASCAME and the centenary of the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce, which holds the presidency of ASCAME.
  • Top level themes were examined in depth by the Chambers to mark the roadmap for the next decade of ASCAME, such as: the digital revolution, the role of the private sector in COP 27, the integration of women in the regional economy, the role of the ports and their global promotion and the promotion of the blue and green economy in the region.

Alexandria (Egypt), 13-14 October 2022 – ASCAME has gathered its community and more than 1000 guests from the economic and business world of the Mediterranean, Africa, Europe and Asia for a special event: the celebration of its 40th anniversary at the Library of Alexandria (Egypt). In an unprecedented institutional event, in the main auditorium of this iconic building, key representatives from the public and private sector at the highest level congratulated ASCAME on its achievements and celebrated its role as the voice of a united Mediterranean that is committed to its integration.

ASCAME celebrates this special moment in its history by organising a variety of events, as well as launching several projects and initiatives. ASCAME’s 40th anniversary events are divided between an Institutional Summit, organised in Alexandria, Egypt, and its iconic Economic and Business Summit, Medaweek Barcelona 2022, which will take place in Barcelona on 16th, 17th and 18th November 2022.

During the official opening, Mr. Ahmed El Wakil, President of ASCAME and the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce, gave an overview of the organisation’s work: “ASCAME was the first organisation for the private sector and civil society in the Mediterranean, as it was created 13 years before the first Euro-Mediterranean conference in Barcelona in 1995. Since 2009, we have implemented together more than 100 projects for the development of the Mediterranean, worth 300 million euros with 80% European funding. We have also created more than 40 sectorial forums in the most important cities of the region, to boost economic and business cooperation in the Mediterranean. These forums have been attended in the last 15 years by over 180.000 entrepreneurs from the Mediterranean and the rest of the world and have led to more than 300.000 business meetings”.

The aggregate trade in goods of ASCAME’s Mediterranean countries amounts to around 5.6 trillion euros. With an aggregate GDP of more than 14.4 trillion euros, the total foreign trade of these countries represents almost 55% of GDP. In addition to trade in goods within the ASCAME region, investments between ASCAME member countries amount to approximately EUR 1.95 trillion.

ASCAME’s 40th anniversary institutional event included several special sessions. The first one discussed the future of Chambers of Commerce and the drive towards digitalisation and Chambers 4.0. ASCAME announced that it will promote a strategic programme aimed at helping Chambers to chart the right course for a new era of business.

The 27+27 session was also held within the framework of the organisation of the COP27 in Sharm el Sheikh. In this session, one of the main topics discussed in depth was the role played by the Chambers of Commerce and by the private sector to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The conversation was held around three axis: the definition of a sustainable regional programme, the promotion of green energies and the business opportunities in the decarbonisation of the Mediterranean economy.

Moreover, as a strategic commitment of ASCAME to the incorporation of women into the regional economy, the 40th anniversary included the celebration of the 14th Mediterranean Forum of Women Entrepreneurs. As always, it was organised by ASCAME together with the Association of Businesswomen Organisations of the Mediterranean (AFAEMME).

Another focal point for the regional economy and integration was presented in a session about the Mediterranean ports. It highlighted the experience acquired by the Port of Barcelona, the Suez Canal and the Port of Alexandria in this important work.

It should be noted that during the two days, numerous business and institutional meetings were held in parallel to promote trade relations and investment opportunities.