Opinion of the President of Creama and Deputy of Economic Development and Productive Sectors of the Hon. Provincial Deputation of Alicante, Sebastián Cañadas Gallardo:
From the Regional Agreement for Employment and Local Development of the Marina Alta (PACTEMA), the First Regional Strategic Plan for employment and activity development is being developed. This project will culminate its first edition with the definition of the road map that will include concrete actions that will be carried out in the municipalities of the region, to boost economic activity and employment in the territory, and consolidate a stable economic and labor system with Robust pillars that allow stability in times of crisis.
The project is part of the Avalem Territori Plan of which the Valencian Public Universities, Labora and the Territorial Pacts for Employment formed throughout the Valencian territory are part, to give a coordinated response adapted to the specific needs of the Valencian territories.
Initiated in November 2019, this project is currently encountering a new panorama that emerges due to the proliferation of COVID-19, and which forces us to rethink the way to act and face the socioeconomic and labor problems that unfortunately have associated , which increases the urgent need to establish measures in an organized manner at the county level, a dimension from which the labor and economic problems that the new rules of the game imposed by the health pandemic imply can be overcome more efficiently.
From Creama as the technical secretariat of the Pact, it is working in a multidisciplinary way with representatives of local entities, business and citizen associations, and public and private entities from different areas with a presence in the region. Currently, due to the confinement situation caused by COVID-19, participatory methodologies have been transformed from the physical to the digital sphere and are being very well received.
Creama's philosophy when working in the region is and has always been to structure the territory, since the key to a powerful economy and a stable labor system is intra-district cooperation and cohesion, where the different economic sectors of the Marina Alta complement and strengthen each other, thus reducing dependence on the exterior and facilitating better coordination and use of resources.
As is well known by the different institutions and public and private entities involved in territorial management and promotion, working from the district level exponentially increases the capacity of the municipalities to achieve results and optimize their own resources, adding to the latter the district resources existing.
In terms of employment and business development, the closest area with influence capacity is the district. Labor markets are inter-municipal, the same municipality does not only employ its population, but employment areas or foci are created among the surrounding populations. In the case of the Marina Alta, it is no different; We found 5 employment centers / areas that exchange services and human resources throughout the entire regional territory.
The explosion of the COVID-19 and the consequences that it is having for the entire society, are in turn maximizing the previous weaknesses that affected the labor and economic market of the Marina Alta: low level of innovation, tourist monoculture, especially in the areas of coast, weakened agriculture and little industry.
In situations of this type, we become even more aware of the need for diversified business activity, the importance of the level of innovation in the business fabric and of a training system that responds to current needs and allows us to adapt to changing contexts.
All these dimensions acquire more capacity or meaning if they are considered from a regional perspective, since in today's municipalities the weight on strategic decisions in these dimensions is at the state, regional and provincial levels.
Lowering that focus of implementation to the area of the region implies better planning, closer to the real interests of the territories and with the capacity to give a more adequate response to the problems that arise in the municipalities.
The vision of working at the county level is based on improving efficiency in the provision of services, and making institutional, democratic and representative survival of small municipalities possible; and, on the other hand, in achieving equity in terms of solidarity and territorial balance between dependent municipalities. This is the logic that is moving different autonomous communities to promote district laws, bringing strategic decisions about territorial development closer to the municipalities.
Thus, the Marina Alta Strategy project aims to consolidate itself as a tool that, in the medium and long term, allows the municipalities of the region to cohesive, consolidating itself in a sustainable and intelligent territory at a business and labor level, establishing a robust, planned, timed and transversal that allows to overcome the limitations and needs of our labor and business market, thus improving the living conditions of citizens.
Under these values are on which the Territorial Pact for Employment and Local Development of the Marina Alta is based, an agreement that today, has 23 municipalities in the region, 13 private entities and non-governmental associations, which have left adhering since its creation in 2017, and to which new municipalities and entities that have understood that together we are stronger, and that the wealth and resources that the municipalities of the Marina Alta have multiply their capacity for growth if they go, continue to adhere each year. hand in hand, cooperating, collaborating and cohesive, because as most experts who participate in these initiatives affirm, Marina Alta as a region is more than the sum of its parts.