The 4th Annual Forum of the European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) will be held on 11-12 November 2013 in Vilnius, Lithuania. The event is hosted by the European Commission jointly with the Lithuanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union in collaboration with the Secretariat of Council of the Baltic Sea States and INTERACT Point Turku.
The event, entitled ‘Baltic Sea, Baltic Growth, Baltic Environment’, will focus on the environmental challenges faced by the Baltic Sea region, and the potential to turn these challenges into opportunities for economic growth, competitiveness and job creation.
The European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) is the first macro-regional strategy in Europe. It aims at reinforcing cooperation within this large region in order to face several challenges by working together as well as promoting a more balanced development in the area. The Strategy also contributes to major EU policies and reinforces the integration within the area.
The EU Baltic Sea Region counts 85 million inhabitants (17 percent of EU population) and eight countries (Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland) which share common features and challenges. Hence there is a clear need for joining forces and working in cooperation. Against this background, the Strategy intends to increase the levels of environmental sustainability, prosperity, accessibility and attractivess and safety and security.
The Strategy aims at bringing together initiatives in different sectors (growth, sustainable development etc) as well as promoting cooperation between stakeholders in the Baltic Sea Region.
The Strategy also promotes Flagship Projects and contributing projects funded in the Baltic Sea Region. These projects have a macro-regional impact and start from joint initiatives involving partnership from different countries.
Implementation of the Strategy requires active participation by all the actors and stakeholders implicated in the process not only at a national level but at a macro-regional level.
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