Cooperation in the Danube Region: Now More Than Ever!

The 13th annual summit of the EU Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR) took place in Vienna on 20-21 June.

The 13th Annual Forum of the EU Danube Region Strategy (EUSDR), co-organised by the Austrian presidency, Austrian federal ministries, and the City of Vienna as host, highlighted the theme of "Cooperation in the Danube Region: Now more than ever!" 

On Thursday and Friday, distinguished panelists from the EU, national, and regional levels explored the opportunities for cooperation in the Danube Region. Next, the forum featured thematic interactive discussions across eight working sessions with our programme experts, focusing on solutions and good practices in areas such as climate change, water & ecology and sustainable economy. This was followed by World Cafe discussions to exchange visions and ideas for cooperation with various stakeholders. The team of the Interreg Danube Region Programme was well represented at the forum. 

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Interreg Danube Region Programme's support to EUSDR

In a joint declaration signed by the ministers of foreign affairs of the Danube countries on the first day of the forum, the ministers acknowledged the vital role of Interreg programmes, in achieving the goals of the EUSDR.

Indeed, Interreg DRP provides essential funding for the activities carried out by the EUSDR. In line with our Specific Objective 4.1., we launched a dedicated call for the financial support of the EUSDR in July 2022. Starting in 2023, this support scheme ensures the functioning of the EUSDR for a six-year period, underpinning sustained collaboration and progress in the Danube Region.  

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© City of Vienna/PID, Photographer Jobst

A decade of strategic cooperation

Launched by the European Commission in December 2010 and endorsed by the European Council in 2011, the EUSDR is a macro-regional strategy that unites 14 countries: Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, parts of Germany, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, and Ukraine. The strategy fosters collaboration among EU members and candidate countries alike, promoting shared goals and regional integration.

Austria assumed the rotating presidency of the EUSDR from Slovenia in December 2023. "Every platform for cooperation, including the EU Strategy for the Danube Region, is good for candidate countries. We want all states that are brought together by the EUSDR and are not members of the EU to join the bloc. We expect their integration into the EU to be at the top of the agenda of the new European Commission," said Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg at EUSDR forum.

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© City of Vienna/PID, Photographer Jobst

12/07/2024

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