A 'Macroregional strategy' is an integrated framework endorsed by the European Council, which may be supported by the European Structural and Investment Funds among others, to address common challenges faced by a defined geographical area relating to Member States and third countries located in the same geographical area which thereby benefit from strengthened cooperation contributing to achievement of economic, social and territorial cohesion.
All adopted macro-regional strategies are also accompanied by a rolling action plan to be regularly updated in light of new, emerging needs and changing contexts.
The four macro-regional strategies concern 19 EU member-states and 8 non EU countries.
EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR)
Official website: www.balticsea-region-strategy.eu
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 8 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. The Strategy was approved by the European Council in 2009 following a communication from the European Commission. In this respect, it provides an integrated framework for improving the environmental condition of the sea, transport bottlenecks and energy interconnections as well as facilitating the development of competitive markets across borders and common networks for research and innovation.
Now well into the implementation phase, the Strategy shows the commitment of partners at different levels. According to the European Commission's assessment, "the Strategy is already contributing positively to enhance cooperation in the Region".
EU Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR)
Official website: www.danube-region.eu/
The EU Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR) is a macro-regional strategy adopted by the European Commission in December 2010 and endorsed by the European Council in 2011. The Strategy was jointly developed by the Commission, together with the Danube Region countries and stakeholders, in order to address common challenges together. The Strategy seeks to create synergies and coordination between existing policies and initiatives taking place across the Danube Region.
The area covered by the EU Strategy for the Danube Region stretches from the Black Forest (Germany) to the Black Sea (Romania-Ukraine-Moldova) and is home to 115 million inhabitants. 14 countries participate to EUSDR, of which 9 EU Member States (Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia), 3 accession Countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia) and 2 neighbourhood Countries (Moldova, Ukraine).
The Danube Region Strategy addresses a wide range of issues. These are divided among 4 pillars and 12 priority areas. Each priority area is managed by two Priority Area Coordinators (PACs).
EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region (EUSAIR)
Official website: www.adriatic-ionian.eu/
The Region is a functional area primarily defined by the Adriatic and Ionian Seas basin. Covering also an important terrestrial surface area, it treats the marine, coastal and terrestrial areas as interconnected systems. With intensified movements of goods, services and peoples owing to Croatia’s accession to the EU and with the prospect of EU accession for other countries in the Region, port hinterlands play a prominent role. Attention to land-sea linkages also highlights impacts of unsustainable land-based activities on coastal areas and marine ecosystems.
Home to more than 70 million people, the Region plays a key role in strengthening geographical continuity in Europe. The Strategy builds on the Adriatic-Ionian Initiative, which concern 8 countries, of which 4 Member States (Croatia, Greece, Italy, Slovenia) and 4 non-EU Countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia).
The Adriatic and Ionian Region Strategy addresses a wide range of issues. These are divided among 4 pillars and 10 priority areas.
EU Strategy for the Alpine Region (EUSALP)
Official website: www.alpine-region.eu
The EU-Strategy for the Alpine Region (EUSALP) aims at ensuring mutually beneficial interaction between the mountain regions at its core and the surrounding lowlands and urban areas, flexibly taking into account the functional relationships existing between these areas. The EUSALP promotes the Alpine Region in its function as an EU laboratory for effective cross-sectorial and multi-level governance, strengthening cohesion within the Union, deepening the cross-border cooperation of institutions and actors in this environmentally sensitive key European area at the crossroads of cultures and traditions. It is a unique example of a Strategy initiated in a bottom-up approach by the people and backed by the States and Regions.
As its main objective, the EU Strategy for the Alpine Region aims to ensure that this region remains one of the most attractive areas in Europe, taking better advantage of its assets and seizing its opportunities for sustainable and innovative development in a European context.
EUSALP includes 7 Countries of which 5 EU Member States (Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia) and 2 non-EU States (Liechtenstein, Switzerland) and 48 Regions. The work is organized in 4 pillars and 10 priority areas.