Sustainability in the Black Sea regional cooperation: Advancing the Black Sea Synergy and the European Green Deal

16 November 2020 | 14.00 – 16.30 CET | online event

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The EU supports better regional cooperation for the South-East Europe and Neighbourhood with its Black Sea Synergy initiative. By encouraging collaboration between countries surrounding the Black Sea area, the Synergy offers a flexible framework for developing practical region-wide solutions to address regional and global challenges.

The EU supports concrete Green and sustainable projects, which have positive economic, environmental and social impacts in the region and in the EU itself. The EU’s engagement to the region, with the Black Sea Synergy initiative at its core, is based on multilateral, multi-stakeholder partnerships, and on a bottom-up, flexible and voluntary approach to project development that contributes to enhancing resilience, solidarity and adaptability in responding to the current and future challenges.

The event “Sustainability in the Black Sea regional cooperation: Advancing the Black Sea Synergy and the European Green Deal” is a Black Sea Green Diplomacy action to be organised on Monday 16 November, as a digital event, by the EEAS and the European Commission. The focus will be on projects supported by the EU in the Black Sea region and on developing discussions linked to regional cooperation and to the European Green Deal elements.

The objective of the event is to promote actions of regional cooperation developed with EU support, particularly related to Green Deal elements. The event supports the implementation of the June 2019 Foreign Affairs Conclusions on the EU’s Engagement to the Black Sea regional cooperation, with the Black Sea Synergy at its core, as well as the current Trio Programme of the European Council Presidencies. Furthermore, resilience and economic recovery aspects in the post-pandemic context will be featured in the regional context of the Black Sea.


The Black Sea Green Diplomacy Conference


Participation and audience - The event aims to gather a substantial and varied audience, 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, as well as members of international financial institutions. Moreover, the event also aims at gathering media representatives from the EU and from the Black Sea region, to foster visibility and exchanges, building on the existing network of media partners covering the region.

Agenda - The conference consists of a VIP plenary session, three parallel thematic sessions (in virtual break-out rooms) and a general concluding session.

The plenary opening session will approach the main elements of the Black Sea regional cooperation and EU’s engagement to the region, as well as the European Green Deal elements and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the region. Introductory addresses will be delivered by high-level representatives of: the German European Council Presidency, the European External Action Service, European Commission, the Romanian Chairmanship-in-Office of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organisation, and the European Parliament. The VIP plenary session will be concluded by a short Q&A session open to all registered participants.

The first thematic session will focus on Sustainable Blue Economy and will be jointly moderated and coordinated by DG MARE and DG RTD. The second thematic room will tackle environmental resilience and will be moderated and coordinated by DG NEAR in cooperation with DG ENV. The third breakaway session will cover cross-border cooperation in connection with the Danube and will be moderated and coordinated by DG REGIO.

The three parallel breakaway session will present projects and discuss results and lessons learned from concrete EU-sponsored projects. Speakers and presenters will address various questions, such as: What is the project doing? And where? How is the project doing it? How is it cooperating with similar complementary projects? Is the project seeking for synergies with the main regional actors/networks/institutions? What is the role of the EU? What are the outcomes? What is planned in the near future? Which are the options to ensure the continuation of the activities after the end of the project? Following these initial presentations, a debate will be opened with the wider audience, with a question/answer session and a forward-looking discussion.

Concluding remarks will be delivered in the final plenary session. The moderators from each parallel breakaway thematic session will shortly present the main takeaways, lessons learned and best practices as well as suggestions on the way forward. Representatives from the EEAS and European Commission will conclude the conference by sharing some final remarks and proposals for next steps.