Building trust can take the form of investment: some ideas to add to a faster growth in the Maghreb

Fecha de publicación:
Francis Ghilès

Last July, under the title Energy & Regional Integration in the Western Mediterranean, a seminar brought together in Barcelona 30 senior managers, bankers and academics, many of whom have held senior positions in state and private companies on both sides of the Mediterranean and in international organisations. The seminar discussed the 5 papers included in this publication: the result was a lively debate on the key role Energy could play in the political and economic agenda of the region. The driving idea, from the very beginning, was to look at what role North African countries might play in a world where the balance of economic and political power has, over the past decade, and is shifting in a manner which few in the west had envisaged and many still refuse to acknowledge. Because this shift is forcing Europe and North America to take account of the views of countries which simply did not matter, economically speaking a generation ago, the process is a painful one. Some in Europe have chosen to bury their heads in the sand and continue to put forward arguments which make little sense in 2010, other are fearful of the loss as they see it of three centuries of supremacy of western economic interests.