Macro-regions, as new functional areas, are the instruments through which EU is trying to achieve territorial cohesion, as set out in Article 174 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, combining at the same time the solicitations arising from globalization. The first macro-regional strategy (MRS) dates back to 2009 while EUSAIR (the one related to the Adriatic/Ionian macro-region) was endorsed in 2014. From a geographical point of view macro.regions involve EU and non-EU countries and offer a platform for multi-sectorial, multi-country, multi-level governance.
Their main characteristic is represented by the so-called “3 no/yes” approach (no new EU funds, no additional EU formal structures and no new EU legislation) which finds its key instruments in the “cooperation” and in the bottom-up form of programming. For this reason the leitmotiv of the strategies is represented by the “optimal use of existing financial sources, better implementation of existing legislation and better use of existing institutions”, all from the perspective of the development of links with non-EU countries. As has been outlined in the abovementioned report, given its short life, in these two years the main effot EUSAIR countries has been focused on the setting up of governance structures and rules.
The general objective of the Adrigov project is to define and implement a shared Adriatic Operational Plan for Governance to foster institutional cross-border cooperation by capitalising on existing networks and other ongoing initiatives, strengthening the planning capacity of local authorities also through specific paths of staff training, promoting the acquisition of the acquis communautaire in the Adriatic partner countries in the process of joining EU. The Adrigov project therefore represents an important operational support to the political process of affirming Eusair strategy insofar as it aims, with its multiple initiatives, to increase, using innovative governance models, the capacity to absorb EU funds by the regional authorities and local participants in Adrigov who adhere at the same time to EUSAIR.
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