EU supports sustainable green development in the Black Sea region


Sustainability in the Black Sea Regional Cooperation: Advancing the Black Sea Synergy and the European Green Deal

On 16 November 2020, the European External Action Service with the support of the European Commission hosted an online event on “Sustainability in the Black Sea regional cooperation: Advancing the Black Sea Synergy and the European Green Deal”.

The event focused on projects supported by the EU in the Black Sea region and on implementing the links between the regional cooperation and the European Green Deal. During the plenary opening session, high-level representatives delivered remarks, including EEAS Acting Managing Director Luc Devigne; Ambassador Luminiţa Odobescu, Permanent Representative of Romania to the European Union, also representing the chairmanship-in-office of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organisation; Ambassador Thomas Ossowski, Representative of Germany to the Political and Security Committee, Presidency of the Council of the European Union; Member of the European Parliament Tonino Picula, also President of the European Parliament Intergroup Seas, Rivers, Islands and Coastal Areas; DG NEAR Acting Director Vassilis Maragos; and DG MARE Acting Director Christos Economou.

The high-level representatives agreed that the Black Sea regional cooperation is more important than ever in addressing contemporary and trans-border challenges. The EU’s engagement in the region is key also to advance the European Green Deal and to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Subsequently, three thematic sessions focused on sustainable blue economy, environmental resilience and cross-border cooperation and connecting with the Danube. The presentations of key results of the concrete projects emphasized the success and importance of thematic and pragmatic cooperation, aimed at identifying common solutions for common challenges, and seizing regional opportunities. The exchanges also demonstrated that the Black Sea Synergy, also via its milestone agendas the Common Maritime Agenda and the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda for the Black Sea, delivers concrete results for the benefit of the citizens, including in areas such as the blue economy, research and innovation. Moreover, these actions and projects are heavily contributing to societal resilience and enhancing trust, security and stability in the Black Sea region. More information on the EU’s projects and actions supporting regional cooperation and presented during the event are available in the dedicated factsheet as well as in the documentation section below.

The event raised awareness and promoted multilateral actions of regional cooperation developed with EU support, particularly related to the current environmental challenges and sustainable green development in the Black Sea region. It confirmed clear willingness to engage further in various substantial areas of cooperation. The EU will continue to build upon the current positive momentum and increase its engagement in the region, linked to Green Deal objectives and green recovery, connectivity, as well as other EU initiatives.

Nearly 300 participants took part, including representatives of Black Sea countries, EU Member States, EU institutions, representatives from Black Sea Organisations and Institutions, project developers, implementers and beneficiaries; civil society, researchers, think tanks; media as well as members of international financial institutions.