News archive - Stakeholder Conference on the EU Strategy for the Danube Region

On February 1 and 2, 2010, a first stakeholder event is taking place in Ulm (Germany), marking the launch of the consultation process to draw up the first EU Strategy for the Danube Region. Drawing closely on the experience of the EU's Baltic Sea Region Strategy, EU Member States formally requested the European Commission to draw up a tailor-made strategy for the Danube Region by the end of 2010.

Since Romania and Bulgaria joined the EU in 2007, the Danube has become an internal EU waterway. As one of the “Trans-European corridors” it represents a priority axis for inland waterway traffic across the Union. Improving navigability for cargo, in a more environmentally-friendly manner, is an important challenge.  But the new strategy will not only be focused on the Danube River, but on the Danube Region as a whole. It will bring the opportunity to address the major socioeconomic disparities in the region and contribute to the greater cohesion of the Union as a whole. It will encompass a host of themes: transport, energy, environment, risk prevention, socio-economic development, education and national and regional identity and culture.

The strategy will be based on a “macro-regional” approach - a new working method in the EU which strengthens synergies between different policies and coordinates the efforts of a wide range of stakeholders (including regions, municipalities, international organisations, financial institutions, the socio-economic partners and civil society).

The conference in Ulm marks the start of a series of conferences and debates which will provide opportunity for interested parties to feed in views and ideas. The process will continue until early summer with further events planned for Hungary at the end of February, Austria and Slovakia (April), Bulgaria (May), Romania (June) and a public consultation. The Commission will propose an Action Plan and a governance system to be formally adopted by Member States in early 2011.

At present, the countries mainly concerned will be those covered by the Danube Cooperation Process: Germany (Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria), Austria, the Slovak Republic, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Romania, Bulgaria, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine (the regions along the Danube).

Sources: EU calendar, Inforegio.

Geographical focus
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Croatia
  • Montenegro
  • Serbia

Entry created by Katarina Rohsmann on February 2, 2010
Modified on February 2, 2010