Euronext, the leading pan-European market infrastructure, has announced a partnership with JA Europe, the largest non-profit in Europe dedicated to preparing young people for employment and entrepreneurship, to promote the Blue Economy by encouraging financial literacy amongst European youth across seven of its main countries.
The programme aims to inspire students about sustainable finance whilst helping them develop core skills such as teamwork, problem solving, and entrepreneurial skills. Through this collaboration, Euronext underlines the important role of the financial sector in boosting the Blue Economy by contributing to the promotion of financial literacy and innovation among students aged 16 to 18.
Starting in February 2021, 175 students from 7 countries (Belgium, France, Ireland, Norway, Portugal, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom) will participate in a series of activities providing exposure to the Blue Economy, including the promotion of financial literacy, and culminating in a final European-level competition. The Euronext Blue Challenge will include thematic e-mentoring and webinars provided by Euronext volunteers in two key areas:
- Blue economy (oceans, seas and marine resources): with all participating countries adjacent to the ocean, it is vital to protect the resource base on which economic activities depend. Euronext’s goal is to be a leader in advancing the Blue Economy in order to address the threats to the oceans and contribute to enhanced coastal resilience.
- Financial literacy: as a market infrastructure, Euronext is at the centre of financial markets and communities. Improving the financial knowledge and skills of young Europeans will impact the broader community of stakeholders at the local level, including businesses, teachers, parents and the school community at large
Furthermore, in April-May 2021, JA Europe will organise national selections from a pool of 35 applicants, resulting in one mini-company per country competing in a final online challenge on World Oceans Day, 8 June 2021. For the first time, Euronext will give the “Blue Innovation Award” to the mini-company that best embodies a sustainable use of the ocean resources for economic growth.
Salvatore Nigro, CEO JA Europe said that “our new collaboration with Euronext allows young people in Europe to tackle one of the biggest challenges of our times through an entrepreneurial approach”. He added that “the combination of entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills for the benefit of the Blue Economy is a win-win for the future generations, our planet and our economies“.
Stéphane Boujnah, CEO of Euronext, said: “The Euronext Blue Challenge is a unique programme that equips youth across Europe with concrete business skills and inspires them to innovate and strive to protect marine. It represents one of the major ESG community initiatives we want to develop within the Sustainable Finance pillar of our Let’s Grow Together 2022 strategic plan. With the support and commitment of our volunteers, this partnership with JA will help ensure the new generation develops the financial literacy needed to successfully contribute to and advance the Blue Economy in the future.”