EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region
EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region : seed money information day
The Seed Money Facility is a new grant scheme for the Baltic Sea Region. The main goal of the seed money is to support preparation of flagship projects and other strategic initiatives (for EU Structural Funds, national funding agencies or other funding programmes in 2014 and beyond) contributing to the implementation of the Action Plan to the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.
Register for the information day by 14 February 2013.
EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region: have your say!
The European Commission is inviting comments on the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR).
The EUSBSR was launched in 2009. It aims to make the Baltic Sea Region cleaner, more connected and more prosperous. The Strategy is a pilot initiative where the Macro-regional concept is tried and tested in a specific geographic area. The EUSBSR was followed by the introduction of a Strategy for the Danube Region.
Over the last couple of years, there has been continuous learning in respect of new and improved ways to ensure sustainable implementation. There are both very successful parts, and areas that can be improved.
The main lessons were outlined in the report written by the Commission in June 2011 and in the Communication of March 2012. These assessments have also been discussed in the Council during both the Polish and Danish Presidencies.
The EUSBSR Action Plan is also being reviewed, to be completed by the end of 2012. The most important elements of this review are to introduce objectives, indicators and targets, at Strategy level and for each Priority Area of the Strategy. These should measure the success of the Strategy, but also focus efforts on the most urgent challenges.
There will also be an assessment of the number and content of the Priority Areas, to decide if they could be merged or reinforced. There is a need for greater focus, and to concentrate efforts on actions that respond to the indicators and targets selected. The end result should be a more compact Action Plan, with Flagship Projects and actions in more specific terms to increase impact.
In addition, there is a need to strengthen the capabilities of the key implementers of the Strategy. New and clarified descriptions of roles and expectations have been developed, as well as set out in a handbook with examples.
An overall analysis is currently being prepared by the Priority Area Coordinators and the Horizontal Action leaders. We also need input from other stakeholders for example at the Annual Forum in Copenhagen 17-19 June.
We therefore urge all stakeholders with views on the Action Plan to send us their comments, as well as to take the floor during the discussions at the Forum. There will be a plenary session and a break out session dealing specifically with the review process. Your ideas on focus, on efficiency and on added value would be particularly welcome. For written comments please send them to REGIO-EU-BALTIC-SEA-STRATEGY@ec.europa.eu. This stakeholder consultation on the new Action Plan will remain open until the end of July.
The European Commission coordinates the efforts of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. For news and information on the activities and progress of the Strategy as curated by the various stakeholders, please visit the EUSBSR's dedicated website at www.balticsea-region-strategy.eu.
The EUSBSR is the first comprehensive EU strategy to target a ‘macro-region’.
The eight EU countries that make up the Baltic Sea Region (Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland) face several common challenges which are reflected in the jointly-agreed Action Plan for the Strategy. It includes a number of priority areas to save the sea, connect the region and increase prosperity – each accompanied by concrete flagship projects as well as by clearly identified targets and indicators. The Strategy helps to mobilise all relevant EU funding and policies and coordinate the actions of the European Union, EU countries, regions, pan-Baltic organisations, financing institutions and non-governmental bodies to promote a more balanced development of the Baltic Sea Region.
The Commission publishes regular reports on the implementation of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.
Achievements so far include:
- Support for new projects, including cooperation between farmers to reduce eutrophication and improved planning for transport infrastructure;
- Greater involvement of Russian partners in areas like environmental protection, water quality and innovation;
- Improved cooperation between regions and other partners, including the private sector
Although the Strategy does not come with extra EU financing, a considerable amount of funding is already available to the region through EU regional policy, other EU programmes and financial instruments, and various international financial institutions. More information on funding may be found at the EUSBSR website.
To get in contact with the EUSBSR team in DG REGIO, please email REGIO-EU-BALTIC-SEA-STRATEGY@ec.europa.eu.
For more information on how to get in contact with EUSBSR stakeholders, please visit the EUSBSR website.