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Before the unexpected, virulent COVID-19 pandemic occurred, studies focusing on regional integration in the Mediterranean region had highlighted the largely untapped potential to increase trade flows of goods and services, foreign direct investment, and mobility of people.
These three interlinked dimensions of regional integration seem to have fallen short of “turning the Mediterranean basin into an area of dialogue, exchange, and cooperation, guaranteeing peace, stability, and prosperity,” the ambitious objective that the Barcelona Declaration embraced 25 years ago and that has subsequently been reflected in numerous Mediterranean alliances and initiatives. While advocating the merits of this objective, CMI has recently developed an enhanced strategy for Mediterranean integration in today’s context.
This approach views the Mediterranean as being at the crossroads between three continents—Europe, Africa, and Asia—with the additional perspective of European Union–Middle East and North Africa–Sub-Saharan Africa vertical integration. In this context, CMI has delivered a series of knowledge outputs produced by CMI staff internally and in cooperation with partners.
The co-development and integration theme is focused on building a new framework for sustained regional integration in the Mediterranean.
The main objectives are to rethink economic and social policies under a regional integration approach and to provide a Mediterranean response to COVID-19. The theme emphasizes how trade liberalization should be implemented in the context of a comprehensive policy package that also aims to achieve social and distributive goals. The program is built around two areas:
Centre for Mediterranean Integration (CMI)
World Bank, Euro-Mediterranean Forum of Institutes of Economic Sciences (FEMISE), The Growth Dialogue, The International Trade Centre (ITC), ANIMA, The African Development Bank, Morocco.