Saturday 6 June 2009

EU Baltic Sea Strategy

Yesterday’s post Baltic Sea Report (Finland) highlighted that the government of Finland has adopted a report, addressed to the Parliament.

The Commission is going to adopt a Communication on its EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region together with an indicative Action Plan on the Strategy on Wednesday, 10 June 2009.

The Strategy will be presented to the European Council in June 2009 and be one of the main priorities of the Swedish EU Presidency during the second half of 2009.

According to the Commission’s web pages on the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region:

The aim of the Strategy will be to coordinate the efforts of various actors in the Region (Member States, regions, financing institutions, the EU, pan-Baltic organisations, non-governmental bodies etc.) so that by working together they would promote a more balanced development of the Region.

After the 2004 enlargement, the potential and the challenges of the Baltic Sea Region have attracted more attention. There are wide differences in economic development between the EU Member States. The whole region is also facing major challenges like the demographic change and the pollution of the Sea. The common problems of the Region call for cooperation of the whole Region.

The Strategy will aim at four main objectives:

1. to improve the environmental state of the Baltic Sea Region and especially of the Sea;
2. to make the Baltic Sea Region a more prosperous place by supporting balanced economic development across the Region;
3. to make the Baltic Sea Region a more accessible and attractive place for both its inhabitants, for competent labour force and for tourists;
4. to make the Baltic Sea Region a safer and more secure place.

Ralf Grahn

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