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EUSBSR Horizontal Action Neighbours

HA_Neighbours_logo_cmyk_pressHorizontal Action “Neighbours” is one of the five Horizontal Actions in EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR). It was included to the EUSBSR Action Plan in February 2013. The main purpose of Horizontal Action (HA) “Neighbours” is to bring stakeholders in the EU member states and neighbouring countries, especially the North Western territories of the Russian Federation as well as Norway. Close cooperation at national, regional and local level is vital to jointly tackle many of the challenges in Baltic Sea Region, and to fully utilize its development potential. HA Neighbours helps interested stakeholders and project partners find each other across the borders. It facilitates discussion and exchanges of experience, as well as concrete projects in the Baltic Sea Region. This has been done through building on two independent but complementary initiatives: the Turku Process and the Modernization Partnership for the South East Baltic Area (SEBA). HA Neighbours – To increase the co-operation with neighbouring countries to tackle joint challenges in the Baltic Sea Region The Horizontal Action is co-coordinated between the Council of the Baltic Sea States Secretariat (CBSS) in Stockholm and the City of Turku, Finland.

For the HA Neighbours brochure go here!

 

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Read more about the HA Neighbours Actions

There are eight actions under HA Neighbours Action: Promotion of higher education and professional networks with innovative enterprises Action: Strengthening environmental cross-border competence in the Baltic Sea Region Action: Fostering labour market related activities in the cross-border context Action: Promoting youth and student exchanges and co-operation in the Baltic Sea Region Action: Develop sustainable cross-border areas for tourism and economic development Action: Development of Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) Action: Cultural heritage and creative industries Action: Fostering cross-border cooperation through youth exchange and exchange in higher education Each of the actions is undertaken predominantly through initially seed money projects which are later potentially developed into Flagship Projects. Currently there are two large flagship programmes within the HA Neighbours framework – CBSS PFI, Balticlab as well as two large projects the EuroFaculty Pskov project and the Lake Peipsi project. Additionally there are seven smaller projects which have been granted seed money and / funding which could potentially lead to larger broader awards. Action: Promotion of higher education and professional networks with innovative enterprises is being answered by the initial project preKNIGHT – Preparatory Actions Towards the Knowledge Network in Green Housing Technologies in the Baltic Cities with the following partners Turku University of Applied Sciences (LP), Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Centrum Balticum Foundation and St. Petersburg state university of economics (FINEC). The project was awarded financing from the 1st call EUSBSR seed money facility). Action: Strengthening environmental cross-border competence in the Baltic Sea Region is being answered by the initial project BSR IWAMA on Interactive Water Management – Baltic excellence cluster for water management (which was funded by the 2nd call EUSBSR seed money facility). It is coordinated by the Turku Process and is a joint EUSBSR Priority Area Nutrient and Horizontal Action Neighbours initiative. It is developed with the following partners Union of the Baltic Cities (UBC), Commission on Environment c/o city of Turku (LP), Lahti Region Development Company LADEC Ltd, Technical University of Berlin and University of Tartu. A second potential flagship project under this action on new manure management chains for the Baltic Sea Basin in Russia is under discussion. Action: Fostering labour market related activities in the cross-border context is being answered by the initial project TransMobinBSR – as a structure to speed up the development of transitional mobility in vocational education in the Baltic Sea Region – by using the Innovation Transfer example of Hamburg – St. Petersburg – Turku. Thepartners: Arbeit Und Leben Hamburg, Mobility Agency (LP), Center for Interregional Cooperation of Employers of Northwestern Federal District of Russia, City of Turku/Education Division/ Turku Vocational Institute. Another initial project Cross Border Information Management in the BSR (CBIM-BSR) focuses on the creation of an information centres network and this will lead to a BSLF Flagship Mobility Initiative under the EUSBSR Priority Area Education. The Baltic Sea Labour Forum cooperation with Russian partners continues as an integral part of the Forum. Action: Promoting youth and student exchanges and co-operation in the Baltic Sea Region (Initiatives in this action are currently under discussion.) Action: Develop sustainable cross-border areas for tourism and economic development is being answered by Vistynets Lake/Rominten Forest project on the Development of trans-border RUS-PL-LT natural area through regional interdisciplinary partnership. The Lead Partner is the Information office of the Nordic Council of Ministers in Kaliningrad. It is also answered through the Lake Peipsi project for an economically and environmentally sustainable Lake Peipsi area. The objective of this project is to improve the environmental situation of the Lake Peipsi basin by establishing and renovating waste-water treatment facilities in Pskov Oblast and by developing modern infrastructure in small harbours on the Estonian side of Lake Peipsi. The Lead Partner is Estonian Ministry of the Interior, Regional Development Department, European Territorial Cooperation Bureau. Action: Development of Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) is being answered by the Council of the Baltic Sea States Pilot Financial Initiative (PFI). Action: Development of Cultural and Creative Industries is being answered by the Balticlab Initiative. Balticlab is a joint initiative between the CBSS and the Swedish Institute consisting of two component parts: Balticlab Networking Weekend and the Balticlab Project Development Programme. There has also been discussion of a continuation of the SEBA cultural and creative industries network in the framework of the Agency for Support of Cultural Initiatives Tranzit – a Kaliningrad based NGO in cultural management. Action: Fostering cross-border cooperation through youth exchange and exchange in higher education is being answered by four projects – the Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue, CBSS Youth Camp, the CBSS Summer Universities and the EuroFaculty Concept particularly the EuroFaculty Pskov project.

strip web-01Balticlab was a Horizontal Action Neighbours flagship project from 2013 – 2015 and is now a flagship project under Priority Area Culture. Young, creative minds in the Baltic region can drive innovation and integration. Balticlab brings these minds together in the same space to create and explore new perspectives and sources for inspiration. As the network flourishes, new opportunities for collaboration open up. The lab is seen as a platform allowing young talented individuals from the Baltic Sea Region to create a dynamic cross-disciplinary network and develop future joint projects in the region. The aim is to build a network through looking at creative industries, media collaborations and entrepreneurial perspectives. Its format will hence serve the overall objective of the programme: to equip young innovative individuals in the region with expertise on starting your own business or carrying out a project idea, as well as to provide them with appropriate tools, skills and connections necessary to achieve these ends in an inter-regional context.

More information on the Balticlab website at www.balticlab-online.eu

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EUSBSR flagship label transparent“Fostering cross-border cooperation through youth exchange and exchange in higher education”

The CBSS Summer Youth Camp 2013 was initiated to foster informal learning, facilitate people-to-people contacts, intercultural dialogue and network-building between young people from Russia and other countries of the Baltic Sea Region (BSR). The project strived in particular to strengthen the BSR regional identity as well as building capacity among youth on sustainable lifestyles choices and actions allowing for sustainable development in the BSR. This was achieved through facilitating and enabling the participation of an international youth delegation of 20 people consisting of members of youth councils, young activists and volunteers from Germany, Norway, Poland, Estonia and Lithuania in the Baltic Artek Youth Camp in Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia in August 2013. This group represented the majority of the international participants at the Youth Camp. The project also facilitated the arrangement of three workshops held in English at the `International Steam´ of the Baltic Artek Youth Camp. The `International Steam’ was one of nine themes of the Baltic Artek Youth Camp. The CBSS youth delegation was not only limited to participating in the `International Steam´, but the delegation travelled to Kaliningrad already on the 7th of August in order to take part in all of the events that the Youth Camp offered and stayed until the Camp ended on the 15th of August. The project convened affiliated youth organizations in the BSR, as well as representatives of higher education, for example the Baltic University Programme and Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University (Kaliningrad City), which were responsible and in charge of arranging the three workshops held in English at the International Steam of the Baltic Artek Youth Camp.

EUSBSR flagship label transparentThe CBSS Summer University features as a flagship of Horizontal Action Neighbours of the EUSBSR with the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS), one of the most central actors in Baltic Sea cooperation, as lead partner. The programme has been developed in 2014 in cooperation between Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin/Germany, Södertörn University/Sweden and the University of Turku/Finland. In 2016, three CBSS Summer Universities took place in Sweden, Norway and Russia. The call for applications for 2017 has been published recently.

More information and the recent call can be found here.

The Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue is a flagship within the EUSBSR Horizontal Action Neighbours and was carried out the first two years (2014 and 2015) as a joint programme of the CBSS and the Körber Foundation, Germany.  In 2016, the successful project was realised in collaboration with the European Solidarity Centre Gdansk, Poland. Together, they gather young Europeans from their respective networks, who are interested in the history of the Baltic Sea Region. Organising programmes in border areas of the region, the young participants get to know each others cultures, in order to reflect, discuss and explore their shared identity. The Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue is important for building a discussion on Baltic Sea regional identity among this generation.

Read more about the Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue project here.

 

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EUSBSR flagship label transparentThe EuroFaculty Pskov project was an educational development project launched in 2009 in the region of Pskov in Western Russia, close to the border of Estonia and Latvia. The aim of the project was to up-grade university education in Business Economics / Business Administration at the recently created Pskov State University (PskovSU) which is a result of a merger of five education institutions in Pskov. Before the merger the recipient institutions were Pskov State Polytechnic Institute and Pskov Volny Institute.

Find more information about it here.

EUSBSR flagship label transparentHA Neighbours Action: Develop sustainable cross-border areas for tourism and economic development is being answered through the Lake Peipsi project for an economically and environmentally sustainable Lake Peipsi area.

The objective of this project is to improve the environmental situation of the Lake Peipsi basin by establishing and renovating waste-water treatment facilities in Pskov Oblast and by developing modern infrastructure in small harbours on the Estonian side of Lake Peipsi. The Lead Partner is Estonian Ministry of the Interior, Regional Development Department, European Territorial Cooperation Bureau. The project is to be carried out within three years and the planned activities on the Russian side are: – Inspection of the waste-water treatment facilities in 16 areas in the Lake Peipsi basin; – Construction and reconstruction of waste-water treatment facilities in Pskov City and in the Gdovsky, Pskovsky, Pechorsky and Palkinsky areas; and on the Estonian side modern infrastructure that meets environmental requirements will be established in three harbours: Tartu, Mustvee and Räpina.

Please find below information about the state of play of the project.

1) Tartu City Government The construction of harbour started in October 2013 and is planned to finalise in December 2014.

2) Mustvee City Government Mustvee City Government decided to divide joint design and construction procurement of harbour into several parts. All construction projects are drawn up by now. The construction of one quay was started in November 2013. Construction on another quay and harbour building should start in spring. All construction activities shall be finalised in December 2014.

3) Kallaste City Government Concerning Kallaste dock several possibilities have been investigated and currently the design and costing of a slip solution are being drawn up.

4) Räpina Rural Municipality Government Räpina Rural Municipality Government finalised the construction in October 2013. In the framework of the project the harbour pavilion, an artificial island–pier and footpath bridge were constructed.

5) Administration of Gdovsky area Construction and reconstruction works on wastewater treatment plant were started in April 2013 and were finalised in December 2013. Procurement for construction and reconstruction of water supply and sewerage networks was launched in November 2013. Firstly design and exploration works will be carried out. Assembly and construction works are planned from April 2014 till the end of September 2014.

6) Administration of Pskovsky area The first procurement for reconstruction of wastewater treatment plant, which was launched in summer did not meet requirements and so a new successful procurement was launched in September 2013. Reconstruction works were started at the end of October 2013 and are planned to finalise in August 2014.

7) Administration of Pechorsky area The construction works of wastewater treatment facilities were started in May 2013 and were finalised in September 2013. In the framework of the project were constructed sewage network from the central rayon hospital to the wastewater treatment plant of Pechory town and sewage pumping stations, the old hospital’s  catchpit was dismantled, existing sewage pumping station and sewage network at the territory of the hospital were reconstructed.

8) State Budgetary Institution of Social Service „Pervomaysky Psychoneurologic Dispensary” Construction works of wastewater treatment plant were finalised at the end of November. Major repairs of networks of households and domestic sewage were started in September 2013 and were finalised in November 2013. Some new activities are planned – works on reconstruction of the water supply system, which should start in spring and end by the end of summer.

9) Municipal enterprise of the Pskov city “Gorvodokanal” Reconstruction of 4 secondary sedimentation tanks was started in May 2013 and is planned to finalise by the end of September 2014.

10) State Committee on nature management and protection of the environment of Pskov region. To find out what is the current condition of wastewater treatment plants, the inspection was started in May 2013 (ended in September 2013). During the inspection all rayons of Pskov region, which water bodies belong to the Lake Peipsi basin were visited (72 objects – centralized and local wastewater treatment plants and sewage pumping stations with discharges within the basin). Based on results of the inspection, the feasibility study aiming at improvement of wastewater treatment plants is being prepared. Compilation of the feasibility study was started in October 2013 and is planned to finalise at the beginning of 2014. Recommendations for the special regional ecological programme “Pure water of the Pskov region 2012 -2017” concerning improvement of the wastewater treatment system of the Lake Peipsi basin are planned to elaborate in January-February 2014.

Creating jobs through regional cooperation – the project in the cross-border natural park Vistynets lake/Krasnolesye/Rominten Forest

EUSBSR flagship label transparentThe objective of the Vistynets project is the sustainable development of a transnational cross-border natural park through a networking model, establishing links between municipalities, regional and national authorities, private businesses, ecologists, NGOs and the creative sector in Russia (Kaliningrad region), Lithuania and Poland, with possible involvement of all states in the Baltic Sea Region.

To read more about the project see the Vision for the cross-border natural park project Vistynets lake factsheet.

 

 

 

image  The Pilot Financial Initiative (PFI) is an open platform for financial cooperation to attract partners and funds to finance  innovative small and medium businesses as well as PPP projects to upgrade social, municipal and regional infrastructure, energy efficiency, nature protection in the geographic area of CBSS. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining the Initiative was signed between the Secretariat of the Council of the Baltic States, KfW Development Bank (KfW Entwicklungsbank) and the State Corporation Bank for Development and Foreign Economic Affairs (Vnesheconombank) on the sidelines of the Baltic Sea States Summit in Stralsund, 31 May 2012.

At the 16th Ministerial Session of the CBSS, held on June 7, 2011 in Oslo, the decision was taken to implement a programme of modernization of the South Eastern Baltic Area with special focus on the Kaliningrad region and its neighborhood, and to report to the 9th Baltic Sea States Summit in 2012 as well as to the 17th Ministerial Session of the CBSS to be held in 2013. The CBSS wishes to bring attention to what this part of the South Eastern  Baltic Area has to offer, and to support its efforts to modernize and interact with other parts of the region. The SEBA programme has been an integral part of this vision. Project development, dialogue with stakeholders and communications have been central parts of the Partnership, which had a two-year time-frame  from 2011 to 2013 and concluded with a conference in Kaliningrad in 2013. To read more about the activities under SEBA and the Conference on Creativity in Kaliningrad, please see the SEBA section of our website.