French President Emmanuel Macron 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 known as the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (Imec). This project aims to stimulate commercial relations between India, the Middle East, and Europe by creating an alternative to the new “Chinese Silk Roads.”
An agreement in principle has already been signed by several countries and the European Union, with the logistics corridor project expected to offer 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%. Additionally, it includes the construction of an electric cable, a clean hydrogen pipeline, and a high-speed data cable.
Gérard Mestrallet’s mission is to identify ports, railway, and energy infrastructures to assess existing and forecast future flows. The port of Marseille may play a significant role in this project, especially in terms of receiving hydrogen. As the first emissary designated among participating countries, Mestrallet will also position France as the main entry and exit point in Europe for the future corridor. He will focus on diversifying sources of supply while strengthening economic, energy, and health security. French companies are very interested in this project, and Mestrallet will support them in positioning themselves for calls for tenders.