Co-Operation In The Mediterranean Agricultural Sector, Maghreb And Southern Italy: A Working Hypothesis
The starting point of the present paper is the idea that to ensure a sustainable development among the Mediterranean countries both of the North and south-east shores, it is necessary to exploit the potentialities of each country and use them in terms of co-development rather then competition. The study area encompasses on the one hand the countries of Central Maghreb and on the other hand the regions of Southern Italy. This choice is originated by the fact that both these regional groups show similarities and complementarities. The paper analyses the agricultural sector which still has a very dominant position in the socio-economic structure, of both Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria and in the Southern Italian regions, although at a different degree. Therefore that seems to be the sector on which to focus in order to obtain both economic and social improvements. However it is not possible to look at the Mediterranean agricultural sector development only from a free market point of view, for the presence of the same patterns of production activities in the two groups. In order to avoid clashes, it is necessary, instead, to create a production network able to develop a typical Mediterranean product with which to compete in the international markets. In this context Italy, particularly Southern Italian regions, due to its tradition, knowledge and geographical position can play a well defined role of a bridge between the European Union and the third Mediterranean countries. In the first part, we address the question of the existence of a direct relationship between liberalisation and economic growth through the analysis of the commercial flows, in particular the agricultural ones. In the second part the complementarities in the agricultural sector of both the Central Maghreb countries and the Southern Italian regions are identified, while in the third and last part, an attempt is made try to specify how those complementarities can be transformed in concrete co- operation activities
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