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front cover portuguese recovery and resilience plan

Portugal’s recovery and resilience plan purposes €252 million for Blue Economy

Portugal was the first Member-State to officially submit its recovery and resilience plan to the European Commission on the 22nd of April. The Plan focuses on resilience, climate, and digital transition, and it is divided into 20 main sections/areas, comprising 27 reforms and 83 investments.

 The Blue Economy is one of the 20 areas for investing, gathering a total amount of €252 million. The four investments are the Blue Hub, a Network of Infrastructures for the Blue Economy; The Green and Digital Transition and Fisheries security; the Atlantic Defence Operations Centre and Naval Platform; and the development of the Azores Blue Economy Cluster.

 The European Commission will assess the Portuguese Plan and wait for all Member-State to submit their recovery and resilience plans. “We will continue to engage intensively with the Member States to help them deliver high-quality plans. Our goal remains to adopt all plans by the summer. For the first payments to be made, we need all Member States to have approved the Own Resources Decision”, said President Ursula von der Leyen.

The Portuguese Recovery and Resilience Plan is available here.

The European Commission Press Release is available here.

 

For more information contact the National Hub Portugal

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Take part in the Seabed 2030 survey – closes end of April 2021

Source: NLA International on behalf of Seabed 2030

Last year NLA International Ltd working on behalf of Seabed 2030, launched an online survey to find out more about the status and potential of mapping the ocean floor. The survey collected views from across all interested sectors to help us better understand issues such as:

  • Why stakeholders feel it is important to map the seabed.
  • How interested parties are estimating the environmental, social and economic value of seabed mapping.
  • Where are the most urgent priorities for seabed mapping.

All of this will help us to corroborate – or challenge – existing thinking, and hopefully identify any areas of the seabed that may benefit from a more joined-up / collaborative approach.

We have been really delighted with the responses thus far – we have received nearly 470 detailed responses to date – and are currently hard at work analysing the initial findings.

However, it is not too late to have your say! We will be keeping the survey open until the end of April, and we would be very grateful if you could contribute your views.

To access the survey, please click here.

More information

Read the article: Marine Geospatial Data: the Cornerstone of the Blue Eonomy

Read more about the seabed 2030 Initiuative:  100% of Ocean Floor mapped by 2030

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A new agenda for the Mediterranean: the Council approves conclusions on a renewed partnership with the Southern Neighbourhood

Press release:  Council of the EU

The Council approved conclusions affirming the EU’s determination to renew and strengthen its strategic partnership with its Southern Neighbourhood. The objective is to address common challenges, take advantage of shared opportunities and unlock the region’s economic potential for the benefit of its people.

Spurring sustainable long-term socio-economic recovery and job creation in the Southern Neighbourhood is a key shared priority and the innovative cornerstone of the new Agenda for the Mediterranean. Working together, the EU and its Southern Neighbourhood partners can turn climate and environmental challenges, and digital transformation, into major opportunities for sustainable development, contributing to a just and inclusive green transition. The EU will use all its available instruments, including the NDICI-Global Europe and the European Fund for Sustainable Development plus (EFSD+), and engage with financial institutions to achieve this objective, paying particular attention to the human dimension and opportunities for young people.

Good governance, the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, democratic institutions and the rule of law are also considered to be essential for long-term stability, security and sustainable development in the region. The EU will step up its engagement on these issues, and renew its efforts on conflict prevention and resolution, as well as on cooperation on security, migration and the preparedness and response capacities of healthcare systems.

The EU intends to strengthen the political dialogue across the Mediterranean by setting up annual meetings of EU member states’ and Southern Neighbourhood partners’ foreign ministers to review progress in the implementation of the new Agenda for the Mediterranean.

Read more on the EU Councils press release webpage

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Report: The future of Mediterranean tourism in a (post) covid world

Mediterranean tourism is now at a crossroad. Severely impacted by travel restrictions due to the COVID19, its future is now decided and faces a fundamental question: back to Mass Tourism or leapfrog towards Sustainability?

Download the report that has been prepared by the Eco-Union. This can also be found on a dedicated page of Eco-Union’s website.

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Blues Summer School – now accepting applications | 10 selected participants free of charge

The Jean Monnet Module titled “The Blue Economy and Sustainability – the EU and the Mediterranean” (BLUES) supports the running of a summer school on the sustainable blue economy for 3 consecutive summers (2021, 2022 and 2023).

This June, EMUNI will run a dynamic and engaging BLUES summer school, offering a combination of distance learning, supervised research or entrepreneurial work, face-to-face interactive teaching and field trips subject to the conditions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The goal of the summer school, jointly organised with the National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics (OGS) in Italy, is to support the creation of stable and attractive career pathways and skilled talents that will be needed to support the expansion of marine and maritime sectors by improving professional skills and competences, fostering networks and partnerships, and encouraging the active contribution to positive change for the conservation and sustainable use of the Mediterranean Sea.

The application deadline is 6 April 2021 at 14.00 (CET) and is open to postgraduate students of any discipline related to the Blue Economy with a demonstrated interest in the Euro-Mediterranean region.

10 selected participants will be able to attend in person the summer school free of charge. To apply and find out more, go to: BLUES project – EMUNI

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The EMFF will move from EASME to CINEA per April 1, 2021

With the implementation of the new long-term EU budget (link removed/ inactive page), some EASME managed programme are moving to the new European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA).  From 1 April, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), the Life ProgrammeHorizon 2020 Energy Efficiency and partly Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge ‘Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials will by managed by the new Agency.

Read the full article on the EASME website

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Call for participants online training on blue jobs and cross-cutting skills for young professionals and graduates of the Med countries

14-15 April 2021 | Limited places available

Blue Skills required in the future are diverse: soft, technical, digital, social media, environmental, security, entrepreneurial, socio-economic, multi-disciplinary, languages, statistics, law, maritime spatial planning. This programme will be useful for students and young graduates from a wide range of academic backgrounds, and will cover topics relevant for a diversity of sectors and careers:
● Business and incubators
● Smart Specialization Strategies
● Technological innovation for sustainable blue growth
● Talent circulation and Partnership Building
● Best/ Good Practices

Target: Alumni OGS – HOMERe – young professionals and researchers; post-graduates in the field of marine sciences and maritime sectors (blue growth/ blue economy related). The places available are limited. The selection will be on a rolling basis.

Language: Simultaneous interpretation in English, French, and Arabic

Download the pdf with all information

Call for Participants: online registration form (open until 01.04.2021) – https://ufmsecretariat.org/registration-form-ufm-homere-blueskills-workshop/

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MERCES and AFRIMED join forces to restore marine biodiversity

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The year ahead for the WestMED Initiative

A new Technical Group on Aquaculture, a Maritime Clusters cooperation scheme, a webinar with a focus on blue skills and another WestMED Stakeholder Conference. These are some of the main activities foreseen in 2021. So, stay tuned!

During the last WestMED Steering Committee meeting, on December 16, 2020, its members outlined a roadmap of activities and initiatives to be carried out in the year to come. 2021 has just started and a number of exciting developments in the framework of the WestMED initiative are already taking shape and will be launched soon.

Two new cooperation frameworks will be initiated. They are based on the successful Technical Group on Sustainable Transport – Green Shipping with key stakeholders, that kicked-off last year. They already convened four times to discuss key developments and will continue their activities in 2021.

The new frameworks will focus on two policy areas which are pivotal for the sustainable development of the Blue Economy in the western Mediterranean. One focused on Aquaculture and one on Maritime Clusters cooperation with the aim of further strengthening ties between Northern and Southern countries within the western Mediterranean.

These initiatives directly build on the insights gained during the stakeholder webinars that the WestMED Assistance Mechanism organised in December 2020, namely the webinar on Sustainable Aquaculture and the virtual stakeholder meeting on Maritime Clusters.

Given the impact and wide range of opportunities generated by these events, a new WestMED webinar will be organised focusing on Blue Skills will be held this spring.

Moreover, another large-scale Stakeholder Conference will be hosted in 2021 – either virtual, hybrid or in-person, depending on the covid-19 developments.

More details concerning all these activities will be coming up soon, so stay tuned through our website and/or Twitter!

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Our WestMED website address will change… slightly

The WestMED initiative’s website is currently undergoing a migration process to the Europa.ec domain. This means that the website will receive a new domain-name as off early March 2021.

As a result of this process, the website will be designed in a way so that it is compliant with accessibility standards of the European Commission. This means that every person, regardless of their diverse abilities, will be able to perceive, understand and interact with the new site.

On top of that, there will be a gradual change in the website’s look and feel in order to enhance user experience. In this regard, a new section on funding opportunities will be added, including a filter search functionality allowing to explore calls for proposals by country and topic, among other criteria.

We will inform you about these upgrades as soon as they’re in place. So, stay tuned!