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Enlarged Europe and the Mediterranean meet to discuss enterprise

The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership - The MEDA Programme
On 10 and 11 April, the European Commission Delegation in Tunis, in conjunction with the Ministry for Industry and Energy, is organising an International Congress on "Free Trade Area: the challenge of competitiveness and industrial modernisation".

The congress, which will be held at the Gammarth Carthage Palace Hotel, Tunis, focuses on the Euro Tunisie Entreprise (ETE) programme, the €20 million European instrument that has supported the Tunisian national programme for small and medium-sized enterprises since 1996.

The Congress has a dual aim: to foster the exchange and transfer of know-how and experiences between the MEDA countries and the EU candidate countries and also to highlight the role and importance of the support of the European Union's programmes.
What impact does the liberalisation of trade have on the industry of the countries on the southern shores of the Mediterranean? What support can the European Commission give the private sector to face the challenge of competitiveness? And how have the candidate countries managed to modernise their industrial fabric and slot into with the European economic environment? What lessons can the Mediterranean countries learn from the experience of the candidate countries?

These issues, and many others, will be addressed during the Congress. Its purpose is twofold: to foster the exchange and transfer of know-how and experiences between the MEDA countries and the EU candidate countries, in the context of preparations for the Euro-Mediterranean free trade area and to highlight the role and importance of the support given by EU programmes (ETE and the new Industrial Modernisation Programme) for industrial progress and modernisation in Tunisia.

On the second day of the Congress there will be four workshops:
- Access to business credit and financing,
- Partnership between North-South and South-South businesses,
- Innovation and industrial competitiveness,
- Sustainable development.

For more information or to register for the Congress, please contact the Congress secretariat at
or Daniela Cavini, Delegation of the European Commission in Tunis,

Brussels,04 14 2003
European Union Redaction
European union
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