On 9 March 2016 the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted a seminar on the future of the Baltic Sea region cooperation, organized back to back with the fourth Committee of Senior Officials meeting under the Polish Presidency.
The seminar was inaugurated by the Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Ms Katarzyna Kacperczyk. She emphasized in her welcoming words that the Council of the Baltic Sea States is a leading regional organization, and at the same time it has a potential to bring all formats active in the Baltic Sea region closer together.
Participants of the seminar included Committee of Senior Officials delegates and prominent experts nominated by the member states. The discussion was moderated by Mr Josef Janning, Head of the Berlin Office of the European Council on Foreign Relations. The introduction to the seminar was made by the Polish expert Mr Olaf Osica.
The aim of the seminar was to reflect on the current state of regional cooperation, challenges and opportunities, as well as to continue the discussion on possible ways of improving governance and coherence in Baltic collaboration.
It was emphasized that the Council of the Baltic Sea States’ role is absolutely crucial in the process of building trust in the region.
Participants of the seminar referred to the increasing conceptual role of macro-regional strategies and links between the CBSS and EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea region in particular (CBSS Secretariat is coordinating Horizontal Action Climate and co-coordinating Policy Area Secure and Horizontal Action Neighbours). They stated that regional cooperation within the Baltic Sea basin is very often perceived as a reference point for other actors across Europe.
The Russian Strategy of socio-economic development of the North – West Federal Districts was also mentioned in this context.
As far as the political dialogue is concerned, participants of the seminar indicated that line Ministers meetings have an enormous potential in fostering regional cooperation.
You can read the seminar report here.
To see more pictures go here.