Detailing its Blue Growth Strategy in 2012, the European Commission has intended to provide a driver to Europe’s welfare and prosperity, and for sustainable growth in the marine and maritime sectors as a whole.
A recent report by the European Commission takes stock of the results obtained since 2012 and looks forward to the next few years, hoping to elicit debate among citizens on the directions to take next.
MedCruise welcomes the European Commission intensive to undertake a series of steps to further translating this strategy to actions, especially the recognition that coastal and maritime tourism are among the sectors with potential for sustainable blue growth.
The coastal tourism industry is by far the largest employer in the blue economy, with 21% of the EU’s population live in coastal areas. The industry offers good opportunities for new entrants to the labour market – the proportion of young people is higher than the average in the blue economy – but the work is often temporary, seasonal and poorly paid.
Reading that reducing precariousness and increasing the number of high value jobs are among the primary objectives of the Commission’s strategy for coastal and marine tourism, whilst at the same time reducing the environmental footprint of tourism, is a positive step forward.
It is within the same principles and that MedCruise has worked in recent times. The Association has contributed towards this direction within the dialogue process between cruise ports, cruise operators and their destinations that aims to safeguard the attractiveness of European destinations.
MedCruise also intends to continue actively contributing to the at the ad-hoc experts group on “Maritime Skills and Careers in the Blue Economy” aiming to limit any skills gap and the lack of attractiveness in maritime and port sector.
MedCruise has committed to continue providing to all policy makers, first hand insights into skills and careers prospects that are present in the provision of port and related services to cruise lines and passengers – so that cruise activities will be among the key options to increase the number of people who might be interested in a blue economy job.
The Association of cruise ports in the Med and its adjoining seas has been and will continue being among the key actors towards implementation of measures that promote smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and employment opportunities in the Mediterranean cruise and maritime economy.