The implementation of good practices, the application of technologies related to the decarbonisation of coastal cities and the improvement of the quality of life of residents were the focus of Blue Economy Forum in Limassol.

Deputy Minister of Shipping Marina Hadjimanoli on Friday delivered the opening address at the Blue Forum, which was held for the third year running by the city’s municipality, in collaboration with Frederick University.

The forum focused on the implementation of best practices, the application of technologies related to the decarbonisation of coastal cities, and the improvement of people’s quality of life.

Describing the Blue Forum as gradually becoming an institution, Hadjimanoli stated that it promotes Blue Growth, meaning the promotion of business initiatives that are considerate toward the environment, through the transition to renewable energy sources and achieving carbon neutrality, something which is a “critical priority for both the European Union and the ministry itself”.

The minister further pointed out that the Limassol municipality’s participation in the EU Mission Cities for 100 climate-neutral and smart cities by 2030 is a significant achievement, noting that this is a very challenging goal that requires the cooperation of all stakeholders involved.

“That is why this forum offers an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas and discuss best practices and strategies on how we can achieve our goals more effectively,” Hadjimanoli stated.

Moreover, the minister assured Limassol mayor Nicos Nicolaides that the government will fully support this effort, “which will benefit not only Limassol but all the other cities of Cyprus”, promoting radical actions and thus accelerating the achievement of the EU’s decarbonisation objectives.

In addition, Hadjimanoli also highlighted the need for fostering educational excellence to guarantee the success of businesses in an ever-evolving market landscape.

“As we move towards the goals of sustainable development, the reliance on human capital becomes even more important,” Hadjimanoli said.

“We need experienced professionals, with an environmental conscience, who can effectively guide us towards achieving our goals,” she added.

The minister further underlined that the deputy ministry of shipping encourages educational excellence, with maritime and environmental education as a priority, and thanked Frederick University for “providing knowledgeable and motivated graduates, ready to meet the challenges of the modern labour market”.

It is important, she added, to continue working together to achieve sustainable development goals, increasing awareness for a greener future and investing in human capital through education.

The minister concluded by saying that the government will do everything possible to contribute positively so that future generations can enjoy and experience a high quality of life in Limassol.

On his part, Limassol mayor Nicolaides stated that strengthening the dynamics of the Blue Economy in Limassol is one of the priorities of the municipal council, which is why the Municipality of Limassol organised the Blue Limassol Forum and established the Blue Economy and Innovation Centre.

He continued by saying that “the theme of this year’s forum is fully aligned with the municipality’s participation in the EU Mission Cities for 100 climate-neutral and smart European cities by 2030”.

Recalling the objectives of the Mission Cities, Nicolaides said that at this stage, the municipality is preparing its proposal, which includes the strategy, actions, and financing for the effort to become climate-neutral through five thematic areas.

These areas include energy, buildings, transportation, the circular economy, as well as issues pertaining to coasts and the sea.

Additionally, there will be a sixth cross-cutting thematic area focused on innovation and technology.