European Commission – Adopting the Danube Region Strategy

 

“Commission launches the Strategy to boost development of the Danube Region”

Brussels, 8th December 2010, European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn

During the consultation period the Danube states have shown their commitment to the creation of a new macro-region at the highest level. The Strategy and Action Plan we are proposing are based on over 800 submissions from the Region itself. By focusing on the most important issues, such as mobility, energy, pollution, jobs and security, I am convinced that the Strategy will make a real contribution to building a better future for this part of Europe. This second EU macro region will play an important part in pioneering this form of co-operation. I am convinced that the macro-regional approach can bring excellent results, as we are already seeing in the Baltic Sea Region.

Better coordination and cooperation between the countries and regions is needed to address these challenges.

What’s the issue?

The Danube Region covers parts of 8 EU countries (Germany, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Bulgaria and Romania) and 6 non-EU countries (Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Ukraine and Moldova). The region is facing several challenges:

  • environmental threats (water pollution, floods, climate change)
  • untapped shipping potential and lack of road and rail transport connections
  • insufficient energy connections
  • uneven socio-economic development
  • uncoordinated education, research and innovation systems
  • shortcomings in safety and security

Who will benefit and how?

The 115 million people living in the Danube Region will benefit from:

  • faster transport by road and rail
  • cleaner transport by improving the navigability of rivers
  • cheaper and more secure energy thanks to better connections and alternative sources
  • a better environment with cleaner water, protected biodiversity, and cross-border  flood prevention
  • a prosperous region, through working together on the economy, education, social inclusion, and research and innovation
  • attractive tourist and cultural destinations, developed and marketed jointly
  • a safer, well-governed region, thanks to better cooperation and coordination of government and non-governmental organisations
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