Wallonia’s Marshall Plan for economic regeneration becomes digital and circular
Wallonia’s Marshall Plan, launched in 2006 by the Vice-President of the Region Jean-Claude Marcourt, is an ambitious plan for socio-economic regeneration of the region. The Plan aims to re-launch the Walloon economy, through the creation of clusters, a combination of job creation and stimulation of economic activities, position training and teaching as cornerstones of employability, better exploit the opportunities of sustainable development, in order to develop a strong economic base for a better future for Wallonia.
Since its launch 8 years ago, over 4.5 billion EUR have been invested in a wide range of actions, resulting in the creation (or expected creation of over 50 000 jobs, support for 40 000 enterprises, half a million trainings attended, of which close to 80 000 in language skills, and some 2500 researchers funded for their work.
Last December, the new Marshal Plan 4.0 was launched, with a budget of 2.5 billion EUR over 5 years. The intention is to focus on the digital and circular economies.
The new plan focuses more than ever on innovation, through important investments in transversal axes which are digital technologies and the circular economy. Research programmes will be run through competitiveness clusters in order to better respond to market drivers. SMEs in particular are increasingly central in the Marshall Plan 4.0, considered to be pioneers of innovation and growth, and drivers of employment creation.
Through its programme NEXT, the Marshall Plan will actively promote the circular economy, in particular through the creation of activities and jobs relating to raw materials, substitution, recycling, re-use, circular design, reverse logistics and new economic models such as the functional and the collaborative economy. Pilot projects run through public-private partnerships in economic activity parks to maximise the economic impact of the implementation of circular economy strategies.
More information regarding the Marshall Plan 4.0 on www.wallonie.be/fr/plan-marshall
Sources: Trends Tendances, 04/12/14, the Walloon portal www.wallonie.be