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Interreg III
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The strands A, B, C and the programmes
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Interreg III: the strands A, B, C
and the programmes

Interreg III is made up of 3 strands and has a total budget of 4,875 billion euro (1999 prices).

  • Strand A : cross-border cooperation
    Cross-border cooperation between adjacent regions aims to develop cross-border social and economic centres through common development strategies.

  • Strand B : transnational cooperation
    Transnational cooperation involving national, regional and local authorities aims to promote better integration within the Union through the formation of large groups of European regions.

  • Strand C : interregional cooperation
    Interregional cooperation aims to improve the effectiveness of regional development policies and instruments through large-scale information exchange and sharing of experience (networks).

  • other programmes under Art. 53 of the Guidelines:
    - ESPON

Supplementing the three strands, a maximum of EUR 50 million (2001 prices) is used to finance networks promoting the sharing of experiences and best practices, which concerns the two programmes ESPON and INTERACT. The European Spatial Planning Observatory Network (ESPON) is a programme financed jointly by the European Union and the fifteen Member States, as well as other neighbouring states. It is a network of cooperation between national spatial planning institutes and will focus on the observation and analysis of territorial and regional development trends in Europe, financing research studies in the field of spatial planning. A secretariat in Luxembourg provides coordination - website: The programme INTERACT (INTERreg - Animation, Coordination, Transfer) seeks to build on the experience and lessons of INTERREG I and INTERREG II, and to improve the effectiveness of implementation of INTERREG III during the current programming period. It will basically provide for exchange of experiences and networking, information dissemination and support to those involved in managing Interreg III programmes, as well as providing information on the INTERREG activities to national, regional and local actors and the public in general. Website :

i_pdf Brief description of the European Spatial Planning Observatory Network prepared for submission to the Göteborg European Council in June 2001: en

i_pdf List of all programmes (approved or under negociation)

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