Working Group on innovative solutions to cross-border obstacles - Towards the ECBM

Following the Luxembourg Presidency of the Council of the EU (2nd half of 2015) and its proposal to create a new legal tool for cross-border cooperation, a Working Group on innovative solutions to cross-border obstacles was established by Luxembourg and France. More info

It was presented under the Dutch Presidency (1st half of 2016) during the meetings of Directors-General in charge of Territorial Cohesion and of Urban Matters on May 11th and 12th 2016. The first meeting of the Working Group was held in Vienna on July 5th 2016.  

Conceived as an intergovernmental platform in a structured dialogue with the EU institutions, the Working Group deals with obstacles to cross-border cooperation and works on the added value, feasibility and design of the legal tool presented under the Luxembourg Presidency. This legal tool has now been taken on by the European Commission, which on 29 May published the draft regulation on the ECBM. More info

The working group will now support this project in the negotiations with the European Parliament and Council.

Objectives of the Group:

  • Establish a toolbox of cross-border solutions
  • Identify concrete examples on cross-border obstacles and their solutions to show the added value of the proposed tool
  • Further develop the proposed tool, and clarify its legal feasibility
  • Support the draft regulation on the ECBM in the negotiations with the European Parliament and Council

Working method:

  • Consultation with stakeholders of cross-border cooperation projects
  • Building on the results of the European Commission’s Cross-Border Review and cases studies identified in similar exercises at the national and cross-border level
  • Consultation with intergovernmental or transnational organisations dealing with cross-border cooperation
  • Consultation with the EU institutions: European Commission, European Parliament, Committee of the Regions, EIB

Members of the Group:

  • National authorities willing to take part
  • The Committee of the Regions
  • The Mission Opérationnelle Transfrontalière (MOT), which holds the Technical Secretariat
  • The Association of European Border Regions (AEBR)
  • The Central European Service for Cross-Border Initiatives (CESCI)

The Group works in consultation with:

  • The European Commission
  • The European Investment Bank
  • The European Parliament
  • Intergovernmental or transnational organisations like the Nordic Council