EU-CELAC Cluster Matchmaking Event on creativity and innovation in the agro-food sector organised in the context of the EXPO Milano 2015, 12th - 13th June 2015, Milan, Italy

Submitted by Camille DURAN on 12 February 2015

Cluster cooperation between Europe and the CELAC region was the focus of the matchmaking event on creativity and innovation in the agro-food sector, which took place on 12th and 13th June 2015. A delegation of cluster managers from European and CELAC countries met to discuss international cooperation possibilities. This was a very successful event of 200 face-to-face meetings which included both Cluster2Cluster and Cluster2Business discussions.

On 12th and 13th June 2015, the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs organised an EU-CELAC Cluster Matchmaking Event in Milan (Italy) in collaboration with Steinbeis-Europa-Zentrum, the Enterprise Europe Network and the EU-LAC Foundation. The aim of the event was to foster cooperation between clusters from Europe and CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) countries. The event was integrated in the Enterprise Europe Network’s B2B event “Creativity and innovation in the agro-food sector” and the “Euro-CELAC Days: Joint cooperation to enhance business and investment opportunities”. The thematic matchmaking event took place in the context of Expo Milano 2015, the central theme of which is “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life”.

The mission was successfully implemented with a total of 42 clusters from 13 European countries (Croatia, Denmark, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Northern Ireland, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Spain, Turkey) and 10 CELAC countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Dominican Republic and Uruguay). European representatives came from a wide variety of sectors including agriculture, food, agriculture machinery, tourism, ICT, renewable energy, biotech, cleantech, logistics and the textile industry, while food production, agro industry and health clusters were represented from CELAC countries.

The European cluster representatives met during more than 50 Cluster2Cluster meetings and about 150 Cluster2Business or other meetings, amounting to a total of nearly 200 meetings. Further exchanges are planned with the three clusters that were unable to participate in person. A guided tour to the Expo area, especially the European Union pavilion, complemented the programme.

Feedback from cluster representatives was very positive and a number of potential cooperation agreements between the clusters are foreseen.

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