Lebanon: MYSEA project Open Day to advance cooperation in the Mediterranean
The Lebanese Development Network, partner of the EU-funded project “MYSEA”, launched an Open Day to talk about the project efforts on taking the most out of the blue economy opportunities and creating employment for disadvantaged people within the agri-food and waste management sectors.
The event, which was held in Beirut on 26-27th of May, has seen a wide participation among TVET institutions, universities, NGOs, private enterprises, experts, volunteers and focused on the Lebanese framework concerning sectorial gaps and relevant growth opportunities which MYSEA project is addressing.
Project partner countries share a common framework: 20-35% of youth are unemployed, 25% are NEET (not in employment, education or training), and women are underrepresented in the labour market. In Lebanon, 18% of the population depends on the agri-food sector, which contributes for the 20% of the national industry revenue. Nonetheless, several issues hamper a full maximization of the industry, like scarce infrastructures, poor food hygienic quality, lack of coordination among the supply chain actors, and policy gaps.
Moreover, despite the numerous potentials Lebanon offers to the sector, the country lacks a comprehensive and integrated waste agreement system that emphasizes waste reduction and material recovery to decrease Lebanon’s reliance on landfills. With 85% of solid waste going to open dumps or landfills, Lebanon could save millions of dollars a year if it were equipped with good waste management practices.
On the other hand, there is a growing proliferation of sustainable and eco-responsible innovations in the agrifood and waste management with an increasing need for new occupational profiles and demands from top-notch enterprises to engage specialized personnel. Therefore, the Open Day event has been a useful occasion to highlight sectorial opportunities within the blue economy and to describe the major objectives of attention for MYSEA project partners: creation of high-level sectorial curricula; training, mentoring and job placement of youths, women and NEETs in the agri-food and waste management sector, putting a special focus on entrepreneurial capacities; bridging synergies among economic actors, public entities, private enterprises and civil society; creation of sustainable and efficient public policies within the blue economy.
All the participants to the event are sure that the EU-funded MYSEA project will bring a high quality support within the Mediterranean area, creating bridges among public/private enterprises, fostering cooperation, reducing unemployment, and supporting innovation.