Maritime economy, the high-potential global sector

Given the stakes facing the planet, the maritime economy plays a central role in the development of the world’s countries. 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered with water, a source of life and evolution. The seas and oceans are at the crossroads of many needs for men. As in food, energy,minerals and even health. In China, the organization of a fair dedicated to these issues, in the presence of international actors, aims to prepare for the post-COVID. The China Marine Economy Expo was held in Shenzhen in mid-October. A “blue economy” in which China intends to do well.

Maritime economy, key issues for the countries of the world

China has experienced significant population and economic growth in recent years. This growth, the country wants to develop further, especially by relying on the opportunities afforded it by the maritime economy. An opportunity that is already proving its worth. Indeed, China’s ocean GDP in 2019 was 8.9 trillion yuan. This is an increase of 6.2% over the previous year. These are encouraging data, especially as the maritime industry tends to grow considerably. France is also a country committed to this effort, having the second largest maritime area in the world. Indeed, with 11 million square kilometers of marine space, 97% of which are located in the overseas regions… France’s maritime economy accounted for 91 billion euros in production in 2019.

Ship war ship port
Defence, or transport, are an important part of the maritime economy.

This sector weighs on the national economy and accounts for no less than 355,000 jobs. Jobs spread over several activities, such as the shipbuilding industry, which employs 46,000 jobs and accounts for a production of 11 billion euros. Shipping and maritime logistics employ 48,000 French people for a production of 29.7 billion euros. The maritime economy plays such an important role in food (fishing, aquaculture and seafood). It has 68,764 jobs and 11.9 billion euros. Finally, oil and gas platforms employ 27,500 people and have 15 billion euros in production in 2019. Between 2016 and 2019, the maritime economy is demonstrating a strong increase in recruitment and production value in France. In 2016, the sector recruited “only” 289,311 people, compared to the 355,000 announced in 2019.

Strong initiatives to protect the oceans

The maritime economy also relies on the challenges of energy and environmental transition, for the well-being of the oceans, their fauna and flora. In France and around the world, associations and initiatives to combat pollution and protect the oceans are growing. The most recent event, in July 2020, was the sinking of the bulk carrier Wakashio off the coast of Mauritius. An ecological and maritime disaster, with more than 3800 tons of fuel and 200 tons of diesel spilled in the Indian Ocean. To combat the pollution caused by this disaster, the French company Capillum has chosen to absorb the pollutants through the hair. With the support of partner hairdressers, the construction of a pudding along the affected coasts has helped to capture a significant amount of fuel and thus limit the impact on the environment.

The importance of the world’s oceans and sea surfaces is the source of all life. The maritime economy is thus at the heart of all the needs of men, being at the same time an aspect not to be overlooked for health, safety, energy transition… In order to meet the new challenges of the maritime economy, many companies are developing to innovate and propose new concepts for the oceans. At present, many around the world are looking for solutions to overcome the “seventh continent”. An impressive – and disturbing plastic surface of an area of more than three the size of France, which lies in the Pacific Ocean…


Press release – China Marine Economy Expo – Representatives of global marine-related companies gathered at the CMEE in Shenzhen to discuss the future of the marine economy in the post-Covid context – 30 October 2020

French Maritime Cluster – The Maritime Economy – Data 2019

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