TEX-MED ALLIANCES - Successful kick-off of the Mediterranean Health Textiles Cluster


The Technopole NEOTEX of Monastir (Tunisia), partner of the EU funded project, TEX-MED ALLIANCES, hosted, on 31st of May 31, 2022, the hybrid symposium entitled Digital Cluster of Medical Textiles. The symposium gathered more than 200 face-to-face and online participants representing the main stakeholders in the field of medical textiles in Europe and in the Mediterranean basin.

This event was the official kick-off of  the new Health Textile Digital Cluster in the Mediterranean. This platform has the aspiration to identify the main stakeholders, mobilise companies at a distance and create synergies and exchanges in order to create fruitful alliances and high added value partnerships among the health textile companies, investigation centers and health administrations. With these objectives in mind, the symposium brought together the medical textiles ecosystem to address several aspects inherent to the smooth running and promotion of the sector.

The symposium was opened by Jalel Ben Haj Khelifa, CEO of Technopole, Samir Rekik, General Director of Textile and Clothing of the tunisian Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mines and Mr. Andrea Falchini, representative of the Italian Centre for Technical Textiles. 

During the symposium introduction, Susanna Leonelli, coordinator of the TEX-MED ALLIANCES project, highlighted that "through the digital cluster, we focus on innovation in order to respond efficiently to the demands of the medical textile market and health administrations with high quality and specialized material". Francesco Pellizari, the technical expert of the TEX-MED ALLIANCES project, explained the genesis of the Health Textile Digital Cluster in the Mediterranean. According his words, "the covid-19 health crisis highlighted the fact that countries were unprepared in terms of time, quality and quantity of sanitary textiles. At that time, we decided to survey textile companies and saw that action was needed. We came up with the idea of creating a digital hub to develop cooperation processes to help SMEs in particular in the efficient production and distribution of healthcare material". In that sense, Ramzi Zammali, the coordinator of the digital cluster initiative, underlined the "positive impact of such a marketing and assistance tool on the competitiveness of the companies and their ability to be much more responsive to the demand of the medical textiles market"

This digital cluster, which already brings together dozens of Mediterranean companies, facilitates access to certification, analysis and testing, business opportunities and tenders as well as monitoring and networking activities. In the symposium, the Digital Cluster's online platform was presented and its intuitive, easy-to-access and easy-to-use aspect and the various complementary sections were highly appreciated by the audience. 

The third part of the day was dedicated to the primary vocation of the digital cluster, whose members are not necessarily attached to a limited geographical space, namely exchanges and the creation of links thanks to a matchmaking session that hosted more than 60 B2B meetings in hybrid mode.

The symposium Digital Cluster of Medical Textiles ended with a strong adhesion by the attendants, and was an opportunity for the different links in the medical textile value chain to meet around common challenges. The synergies that emerged from this meeting offer very promising premises for the development of links between the stakeholders. This is why the symposium concluded with the announcement of the official opening of the virtual marketplace on 01 June, which will run until 01 September to bring together the supply and demand for medical textile products.