Mediterranean ports join hands to promote trade

Mediterranean ports join hands to promote trade

Dec 20, 2016: Ports from around the Mediterranean coast are looking to form an organization to promote the area’s role in global maritime trade.

Formed following the Medports Forum held in Marseille last month, the organization will cooperate on issues including security, the environment and supply chain innovation.

Christine Cabau Woehrel, Marseille Fos CEO and current Intermed Gateways chair, said, "We want to set the conditions for an efficient Mediterranean alternative to the northern port routes… by sharing our experiences, by developing new shipping routes and supply chain models, by promoting training and by developing IT solutions to create smart ports."

She added, "It is only by working together that we will be able to face the numerous challenges to make this region a major world shipping area on a long-term basis. We are meeting for the first time but it is up to you to make sure it is not the last and to trigger a new dynamism between Med ports."

Participants at the forum included representatives of 25 port authorities from throughout southern Europe and North Africa as well as Bulgaria, Turkey and Israel.

Together with professionals from the Euro-Mediterranean shipping and logistics sectors, they met to explore collaboration over business development and sharing best practice.

Discussions surrounded the ports’ strategic position at the crossroads of international shipping routes, with emphasis on container trades.

During discussions, it was noted that that average growth in box volumes over the past two years had been faster in Mediterranean ports than in the north European range.

This underlined support for a 'southern gateway alternative' strategy offering new routes to Europe-wide markets via Med ports and innovative overland logistics corridors.

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