The Baltic Sea Region countries are about to start an ambitious project in the field of cross-border cooperation, called “Baltic Euroregional Network” (BEN). The starting conference of the project is held in Vilnius on September 26-27th. The project is financed by the EU Baltic Sea Region Interreg III B Neighbourhood Programme and has a total budget of a 1,4 mill. Euro.
BEN aims at strengthening the institutional capacity of euro regions, institutions that implement cross-border cooperation policy. The BEN project will facilitate the creation of a network of euro region in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR).
Successful work by the euro region's contributes to the removing of existing obstacles, which hinder contacts between people living in the border areas. The Nordic cross-border regions have a long tradition of working on very concrete issues of cross-border relations: providing information for people moving from one country to another, creating networks of business from bordering regions, developing a common infrastructure etc. The BEN project helps to transfer that experience to the Baltic and Russian euro region. The project also aims to discover new possibilities for cooperation between EU countries, and special interest is devoted to the cooperation across the EU’s external border with Eastern neighbours, Belarus and Russia.