INTERMARE: blue growth internationalisation
Blue growth is one of the most advanced strategic initiatives of European Community, targeted to discover and utilise great business and wellbeing opportunities related to marine environment and resources. Evident technological trends show conversion of large scale conventional maritime business to modular, driver-less, clean and safe to environment and humans innovative industries: coastal and marine tourism, marine biotechnologies, aquaculture, offshore energy and sea bad mining.
Such maritime conversion is great innovation and big challenge for traditional maritime business, local and national authorities, education institutions and employees. So, special blue growth development activities and knowledge are necessary. Technologically leading EU countries like Germany, Denmark, Sweden has more experience and achievement on blue growth business and support facilities. Lithuanian maritime is in very beginning of this process. The State of Lithuania is mainly the recipient of blue growth technologies and culture nowadays.
So, why we highly appreciate EU Interreg development programmes like South Baltic (SB), Baltic Sea Region (BSR), etc., which lets our scientists and developers to involve in international projects, take the best practice and experience from leading countries. Innovators of Strategic Self-Management Institute (SSI) and Klaipeda university (KU) started blue growth internationalisation from participation in INTERREG IIIa project POWER, dedicated to discovering offshore wind energy opportunities in marine territories of Poland, Lithuania and Kaliningrad district (Russia) in 2006 year. SB programme projects SB-OFF.E.R – Offshore wind energy regions in South Baltic and WEBSR2 – wind energy development in BSR (from 2010) helped to mapping and legislative framing of future offshore wind power parks. Teaching on offshore wind energy was arranged in Klaipeda university.
Technological conversion always requires new and more advanced approaches and methodologies. Physical growth and innovation culture needs to be improved by Economical (FinTech), Green (CleanTech), Sustainable (HealtTech) and Smart (ArtInt) quality approaches. SB programme project CleanTech International was dedicated to establishing an Cleantech International cooperation structure in SB region started in 2016 seeking to introduce innovations in fields of green mobility, green waste and water processing, green construction and renovation, also in large scale of renewable energy sources. It lets to start talk about green maritime, green transport, green ports, modular and e-mobility, etc. From now SME’s declared as main actors of blue growth innovations.
SB programme project „CIRTOINNO - promotion of Circular Economy innovations in Green and Blue Tourism SME‘s“ (from 2016) started to work Market research, Self-Assessment, Learning and Advisory tools for tourism service providers towards waste-free marine and coastal tourism service business. Recognised economical model of growth is too modest and it isn‘t in accordance to EU2020 strategy of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The necessity for rise to Green, Sustainable and Smart levels of growth was recognised, learning on that and advisory service was arranged in 2018 in Denmark, Sweden, Poland and Lithuania. In Lithuania it was discovered, how introduction of 54 innovations in tourism service business could enable to reduce material, energy and organisational resources and rise business profitability on 60%.
SB programme project INTERMARE is dedicated to internationalisation of SB maritime economy by implementation of special activities, related to market research, creation of regional strategy, creation and promotion of common brand INTERMARE trough support for participation of regional maritime SME’s in international exhibitions, conferences and other events worldwide. The brand was presented in international fair KORMARINE in October 2017 in Busan, South Korea. The exhibition Oceanology International in March 2018 in London was great place for meet large scale of advanced developers of new blue growth opportunities. Next project events will be arranged in the fair Balt Military Expo 2018, fair SMM Hamburg 2018 and other fairs chosen by project partners. The final project exhibition INTERMARE 2020 will be arranged in Gdansk.
EU is great idea, organisation and opportunity for all member States and especially for Lithuania. The blue growth is one of the most important tools seeking to assure great future of European home.