Cooperation with other regions, entities and other regional strategies
The CBSS through the Secretariat has always had strong ties to other regional organisations across different formats. This cooperation has strengthened in light of the experience the CBSS has gathered with strategy coordination and in the lead up to the adoption of the third macro-regional strategy – this time building on the lessons learnt and experience from the two current macro-regional strategies (EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, EU Strategy for the Danube Region).
On 17 June 2014 the European Commission adopted a Communication on the EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian region, accompanied by an Action Plan . The new Strategy incorporates the Maritime Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, adopted by the Commission on 30 November 2012.
The Communication and Action Plan have been transmitted to the other EU institutions and bodies, and will be discussed in the Council during the second semester of 2014 with a view of its endorsement by the European Council before the end of the year.
This is the first EU ‘macro-regional strategy’ with such a large proportion of non-EU countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Serbia) cooperating with EU members (Croatia, Greece, Italy, and Slovenia). The Strategy mainly revolves around the opportunities of the maritime economy – ‘blue growth’, land-sea transport, energy connectivity, protecting the environment and sustainable tourism – sectors that are bound to play a crucial role in creating jobs and boosting economic growth in the region so therefore has a strong correlation with the interests of the Baltic Sea Region – especially blue growth. The CBSS Deputy Director made two visits to Bosnia and Herzegovina the first in September 2013 when he participated in a workshop on regional strategies at the Regional Cooperation Council in Sarajevo, Bosnia Herzegovina. The second when the CBSS Deputy Director General participated in the South Eastern European Strategy 2020 Final Conference organized by the Central European Initiative and the Regional Cooperation Council Secretariats on 17-19 March again in Sarajevo. On the 13 May 2014 the Director General took part in the XVII Adriatic Ionian Council Meeting upon invitation of the H.E. Mr Ditmar Bushati, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Albania which took place in Brussels.