MONACO - Sept. 26, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sustainability as a central element to create virtuous marinas and tourism that is more aware and respectful of the environment. It is the Leitmotiv of the Monaco Smart and Sustainable Marina Rendezvous, organized by Monaco Marina Management (M3), a company active in the development, management and promotion of marinas and yacht clubs, at the Yacht Club de Monaco. Numerous international guests brought their contribution to the event where 50 startups and scaleups and 20 mariners and architects gathered, all from 26 countries, alongside financiers and political representatives. Prince Albert II of Monaco also participated at the event and, after greeting the participants, he spoke with some of them including HH Prince Saud Bin Turki Al Saud, general manager Saudi Red Sea Authority, S.E. Ana Elena Pinto Lozano, Costa Rica Ambassador in Francia, Permanent Delegate of Costa Rica to UNESCO, Rear Admiral Reda Ahmen Ismail, head of maritime transport sector of Egypt, Elisabeth Anna Rebecca Chouraki, International Technical Expert PAMEx (Action Plan for a Model Mediterranean).
“Yachting is a circular economy – underlines Alessandra Priante, director of the UNWTO Regional Department for Europe – which includes many factors from the producer to the final destination. The marina is a bit like an airport: it all starts from there, from the arrival, and from how the marina is able to involve the entire territory in which it is located. The more there is a 360-degree vision, the more successful it is to find winning strategies because sustainability must materialize in a series of actions." And the situation is developing rapidly: “We noticed – she adds – that before Covid, at the end of 2019, there was talk of the problem of too much tourism. So we have always raised the red flag with the United Nations agency specialized in this that sustainable strategies should become reality. After the recovery of Covid we saw that the destinations that were already sustainable and the marinas that already had sustainability approaches integrated with the territory were successful. However, situations where this effort had not been made now find themselves with the same problems as 2019."
The main objective of the event is to present the latest innovations in terms of sustainability, allowing financiers, political representatives and innovators to come together and be put in contact with the entire ecosystem of marinas closely linked to the development of increasingly responsible tourism. “Our idea of sustainable nautical tourism and therefore in a broader way a protected marine ecosystem – states Linos Voskarides, Policy Officer - Maritime Policy - Blue Growth, European Commission - is to make the sustainable marinas a part of the city and not apart from the city. Sustainable nautical tourism and sustainable development of marinas are the key to having a protected marine ecosystem and a well-preserved coastline in the future.” Saudi Arabia is taking the first steps in this direction, hoping to become a leading country in this sector: "In our country we are starting to lay the first bricks. Fifteen, ten or even five years ago in our country we had no activities or forms of tourism linked to the marinas, so we are taking the first steps in this direction. Precisely because we are at the beginning, however, we will immediately include sustainability and environmental protection in our regulations," adds HH Prince Saud Bin Turki Al Saud, general manager Saudi Red Sea Authority. And Egypt is also working in this direction: “This meeting allows us to become aware of the ideas of the sector and therefore to develop our marinas in order to make them smarter and more ecological in the future. Egypt has worked hard to welcome all those who visit the country by sea on cruise ships or yachts,” underlines Rear Admiral Reda Ahmed Ismail, head of maritime transport sector of Egypt.
Representing more than 26 different countries, 50 startups and scaleups generated by Blumorpho, expert in innovation for sustainability, as well as 20 marinas and architects coming from M3 network, are taking part at the two-day event. At the end, the International Smart & Sustainable Marina Awards will be presented for three categories, Startups & Scaleups, Marinas and Architects. The famous French architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte chairs the jury that will decide between the numerous proposals. In addition to this year's edition, an ideas competition is also being held to inspire architects and students to create waterfront projects that are not only attractive and functional but also sustainable.