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Borders: A space for peripheral decision making?  

The PRO-SUD region with the GECT Alzette Belval & Pôle Métropolitain Frontalier du Nord Lorrain (PMF) were successful in their application to the call from the OECD and DG REGIO: “Building More Resilient Cross-Border Regions” project. Our French-Luxembourg territory counts for 520 000 citizens. 

The European Commission’s DG REGIO and the OECD invited representatives from five selected pilot regions to participate in the kick off project. 

In particular, the 15-month project will look into the implementation of public policies (e.g. cross-border tax policy) and services (e.g. in healthcare, transport, education) in functional border areas.  

The project will focus on the following three governance aspects: 

Actors: Which public and non-governmental actors are involved in cross-border co-operation; how they engage with each other; what are barriers to the effective design and delivery of cross-border policies and services? 

Policy objectives: How to develop and implement integrated territorial strategies for functional border areas that strengthen spatial planning, boost the delivery different public services, and improve cross-border tax policy and labour mobility?  

Means: What funding and financing mechanisms are being used and can be explored further to support cross-border public service delivery and improve physical infrastructure. 

The four other pilot regions cover parts of the following countries:  

  • Andorra, France and Spain. Working Community of the Pyrenees (CTP) 
  • Belgium and France. Eurometropolis Lille-Kortrijk-Tournai (GECT) 
  • Lithuania and Poland. “Euroregion Niemen” Association and Alytus City Municipality 
  • Portugal and Spain. European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation – Rio Minho EGTC 

The objectives of the kick-off event in Brussels was to formally launch the project. The pilot regions were given the opportunity to familiarise with the different components of the initiative  

One third of the EU population lives in a cross-border territory. Border needs to unite people rather than divide them.