Emmanuel Macron, the French President, has appointed Gérard Mestrallet, a former CEO of Engie and ex-president of Suez, as the emissary for the logistics integration corridor project between Europe and Asia. This project, known as the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (Imec), aims to stimulate commercial relations between India, the Middle East, and Europe by offering economic growth and low-carbon transition.
The Imec project will take the form of a rail link and is expected to accelerate trade between India and Europe by 40%. In addition to this, it includes the construction of an electric cable, a clean hydrogen pipeline, and a high-speed data cable. French President Macron hopes to position Marseille as the European “bridgehead” of the project, emphasizing France’s expertise in transportation and energy.
Gérard Mestrallet’s mission as the first emissary designated among participating countries is to identify ports, railway infrastructure, and energy infrastructures to assess existing flows and forecast future ones. The port of Marseille may play a significant role in this project due to its potential for receiving hydrogen. Furthermore, France intends to position itself as the main entry and exit point for future corridors in Europe while diversifying sources of supply and strengthening economic security.
French companies are very interested in this project, with Mestrallet set to support them in positioning themselves for tenders related to Imec. The appointment of Mestrallet highlights France’ commitment to promoting economic cooperation between different regions while addressing global challenges such as climate change.