EU-Ukraine Info Session 1 – Territorial Cooperation & Danube Region Strategy

This information session for 17 Ukrainian government officials was carried out on behalf of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Regional Policy (DG REGIO). It took place from June 20 to July 01, 2011 within the framework of the European Parliament’s pilot project to enhance regional and local cooperation by promoting EU regional policy on a global scale. It was the second in a series of four sessions that are implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Entwicklung (GIZ) GmbH. GIZ is a federally owned enterprise of the German Government aimed at supporting it in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development.

The information session focused on territorial cooperation and on the EU Strategy for the Danube Region, an initiative launched 2010. It contained a mix of lectures and field visits. The course started with a briefing session in Kiev, delivering an introduction to the basics of EU regional policy as well as a summary of the EU-Ukraine cooperation on regional policy. The Ukrainian delegation also visited the Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine, where it received an overview of bilateral cooperation especially regarding regional development issues.

The session continued with a lecturing day in the training centre in Bonn, where participants attended presentations on the specific topics of the training session, i.e. regional policy, European territorial cooperation and the Danube Strategy of the European Union.

Participants then started a series of field visits in Bonn (Germany), Maastricht (Netherlands), Eupen and Brussels (Belgium), Budapest (Hungary), Vienna (Austria) and Warsaw (Poland). The summary session in Warsaw consisted of a half day workshop, in which participants developed their own reflections on EU regional policy and its significance for Ukrainian challenges. The workshop summarised the key contents of the seminar. Participants were also able to evaluate the seminar. They returned from Warsaw to Kiev. The overall programme included 23 sessions.