"We stress the importance of structuring Euro-Mediterranean cooperation in marine and maritime sectors to encompass a broad range of objectives comprising the creation of new, blue jobs and social well-being while also being mindful of sustainable development and the preservation of the environment in the Mediterranean area » declared at La Valletta UfM R&I Ministers, together with the EU Commissioners, a year ago. After the set-up of the Group of Senior Officials BLUEMED Working Group as new governing body of the BLUEMED Initiative (February 2018), the first operative steps towards the realization of the Valletta declaration took place with the first BLUEMED National Consultation Days being organized by non-EU Countries (25-27 June and 3-6 July). Meetings were held in Algiers (Algeria), La Marsa (Tunisia), Ankara (Turkey), Alexandria (Egypt) and Amman (Jordan). The participants were invited to discuss the state of the collaboration around the Mediterranean basin, confront on the key enabling knowledge, technologies and sectors needed to sustain and foster blue growth and sustainability in the region and elaborate on the next activities to envisage in order to meet the challenges of the future. Their contributions will provide direct inputs for updating the BLUEMED Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda, as first milestone towards establishing shared priorities at the regional level of the Mediterranean and starting the development of an implementation plan to realize joint actions. The extension of the BLUEMED Initiative to non EU countries is aimed at sharing information and knowledge base among Mediterranean countries and agree on common targets and objectives. The series of national events, hence, marks an important step towards a renewed engagement to foster research and innovation in the marine- and maritime-related fields and the promotion of scientific diplomacy among the concerned countries. The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) actively took part to the BLUEMED National Consultation Days, organized by the national delegates to the GSO BLUEMED WG, along with representatives of the European Commission, and of the consortium of the BLUEMED Coordination and Support Action. After this tour in non-EU countries, the BLUEMED members will gather again next October at the occasion of the BLUEMED week at the UfM premises in Barcelona.