Marrakech GES2014 Biden Launches J Christopher Stevens Virtual Exchange Initiative

Marrakech-  US Vice President Joe Biden announced, here Thursday, the launch of the J. Christopher Stevens Virtual Exchange Initiative to promote exchanges between American and MENA region youth.Launched in honor of Christopher Stevens, former US ambassador to Libya killed in September 2012 in Benghazi, the initiative, which will kick off in Morocco with the launch of a pilot project early 2015, aims to enhance the capacity of young people to take up local and global challenges through promoting their connectivity, Biden said in a speech at the opening ceremony of the 5th Global entrepreneurship summit, held in Marrakech on November 19-21. The United States are committed to the emergence of a new generation of open and future-oriented young people, the US vice-president said, adding that this initiative, the result of a multilateral partnership between private and public sectors, will contribute to consolidating bonds between young people in the USA and the MENA region, building on the valuable contribution of new information technologies. In this respect, the program will strive to lay the groundwork for exchanges between young people especially in the field of education. More than a million young people will benefit from this initiative whose ultimate goal is to overcome the problems related to misunderstanding.The US vice-president said, in this context, that a number of countries have expressed their desire to partner with the United States in this initiative.So far, Morocco, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have signed financial commitments totaling more than $ 31 million over the next five years as part of the initiative, which will involve foundations and private sector partners, Biden said.Joe Biden, who led the US delegation to the 5th Global Entrepreneurship Summit, had also met with young entrepreneurs taking part in this international summit on the challenges of innovation, free enterprise and sustainable development.