The Adriatic-Ionian Euroregion (AIE) is an international association established on the 30th of June 2006 in Pula (Croatia) for the promotion of trans-national and inter-regional cooperation between regions and local authorities of the Adriatic and Ionian basin.
The association counts 29 members (Regional and Local authorities from Italy, Croatia, Greece, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Albania). All members are units of territorial self-governments and most of them are NUTS2 (the first level below State, in conformity with the European Community nomenclature NUTS, and with the administrative organization of each country). The total extension of the involved territories is about 200.000 square kilometers with an estimated population of around 20 Millions of inhabitants.
The AIE represents a model for cross-border and interregional co-operation aimed to promote the coordinated and integrated development between regions of the area. Since 2006, the AIE has been targeting its efforts towards ensuring the interests of its members and towards the common development of the whole area. Furthermore the association supports the members, especially those in the European accession process, to create joint initiatives and to prepare the regional stakeholders to be qualified in the implementation of the cohesion policy and to deal with the European financial instruments.
The AIE goals can be synthesized into the protection of the cultural heritage, protection of the environment, sustainable economic development in the field of SMEs, tourism, fishery, transport and infrastructure. Another important purpose is to support the European citizenship through actions that promotes the involvement of citizens by developing their sense of European identity and appreciating multilingualism and multiculturalism as common European heritage.
According to the statute, the AIE pursuing the following objectives:
- to establish and to develop mutual relations between inhabitants and institutions of this territory as precondition for the improvement of knowledge, understanding and collaboration;
- to create the conditions for the economic development respecting the environment;
- to determine common interests of development, preparation, definition and harmonization of a common development strategy;
- to achieve the cultural exchange programmes;
- to ensure the conditions for an effective exchange of experiences and implementation of EU programmes.
In the early years of 2000, the initiative of setting up the Adriatic Euroregion was launched by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities (CLRAE) of the Council of Europe with the support of Istria and Molise Region. Several preparatory events and conferences, held in the different countries (such as Conference in Termoli on 8-9th November 2014 and in Venice on 6th February 2016), laid the basis for the political constitution of the Euroregion.
The idea to launch a concrete partnership between the regional and local authorities of the Adriatic became reality with the first Assembly – the Council of the Adriatic Euroregion – held in Pula on 30 June 2006. The event was attended by several the political representatives of the member regions, as well as, by the Council of Europe, the Committee of the Regions, the President of the Republic of Croatia, the President of the Republic of Bosnia Herzegovina and by the Italian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs.
In the recent years, the Adriatic Euroregion changes its name in Adriatic Ionian Euroregion (AIE). The association have been committed with several activities for the thematic commissions and the organization of several events, such as statutory meetings, conferences, thematic workshop and trainings. The association has followed since the beginning the process of the EUSAIR, the European Union Strategy for the Adriatic Ionian Region, pushing the adoption of the strategy to the European Institutions and Members states and providing key contributions to the consultation process.
TIMELINE OF THE ASSOCIATION AND MAIN EVENTS
From 2000 – 2004
- Preparatory Meetings, Conferences and jointly declaration (Declaration o Pula)
- Foundation of the association on 30th June, Pula (Croatia), 1st Constitution Assembly
- 2nd General Assembly, 22nd November, Ancona (Italy)
- Approval of Adri.Eur.O.P. Interreg IIIA project to support start up phase of the Euroregion
- Constitution of the Thematic Commissions, 16th – 17th April 2007, Brijuni Islands (Croatia)
- Official opening of the Brussels Delegation Office, 17th June, Brussels (Belgium)
- 3rd General Assembly, 21st September, Shkoder (Albania)
- Commission working meeting, 3rd and 4th December, Venice (Italy)
- Meeting with the European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Ms Danuta Hübner, 22nd January, Brussels (Belgium)
- Presentation of the association at the Congress of Local and Regional authorities of the Council of Europe, 29th May, Strasbourg
- Meeting of the Thematic Commissions and Executive Committee, 12-13 June, Dubrovnik (Croatia)
- 4th General Assembly, 25-26 September Ferrara (Italy);
- 5th General Elective Assembly and Declaration for the promotion of the adoption of the Strategy for the Adriatic, 22 October, Split (Croatia)
- Conference at the Committee of the Regions “Initiative for the Creation of an Adriatic Strategy – A contribution to the European Integration” and “Defining competences and skills of public managers of the Adriatic Euroregion”, 24th – 26th February, Brussels (Belgium)
- 6th General Assembly, 30th June, Campobasso (Italy)
- Executive Committee, 23 January, Dubrovnik (Croatia)
- 7th General Assembly, 13th June, Trieste (Italy)
- Meeting with Adriatic Fora, 24th July, Termoli (Italy)
- Open Days – Round Table “Adriatic-Ionian Macro-Region for an idea of development and competitiveness which affects about 25 million people”, 10 October, Brussels (Belgium)
- Approval of AdriGov, a project co-financed by the IPA Adriatic CBC Programme aimed to support the Thematic Commissions of the Euroregion.
- 8th General Assembly and Round Table “The new EU Strategy for the Adriatic-Ionian Macroregion” – 14-15 January, Termoli (Italy)
- The association changes its statutiory name form Adriatic Euroregion to Adriatic Ionian Euroregion, January
- Thematic Sessions on Maritime Strategy – Commission Environment, 6/7 March, Bologna (Italy)
- Conference “The role of regional authorities in the promotion of European citizenship”, 18 April, Pula (Croatia)
- Executive Committee, 08 May, Rijeka (Croatia)
- Commission on Transport and Infrastructure, 08 May, Rijeka (Croatia)
- Opening of the Center for EU and International Cooperation in Istria, 9 May, Bale (Croatia)
- Seminar and Thematic Session on Youth, Training and Employment, 27/28 May, Sarajevo (BiH)
- Celebration of Croatia’s Accession to the EU, 01 July, Pula (Croatia)
- Thematic Committee on Tourism and Culture and Workshop “Towards the Adriatic Ionian Macroregion: policies and tools for boosting territorial tourism attractiveness”, 25-26 September, Bari (Italy)
- Open Days, 09 October, Brussels (Belgium)
- Commission on Transport and Infrastructure, 6-7 November, Shkodra (Albania)
- 9th General Assembly, 4 December, Bologna (Italy)
- Workshop “The Albanian Regions as the important part of AIE and the EUSAIR policy”, 26 February, Shkodër (Albania)
- Thematic Commission and Workshop on Transport and Infrastructure, 4 April, Rijeka (Croatia)
- WORKSHOP – “SMEs and FDI development, Comparative analysis in IPA Countries” and Commission for Economic Affairs , 13/14 May, Podgorica (Montenegro)
- Thematic Committees on Environment and AIE Thematic Committees on Welfare, 27 May, Bologna (Italy)
- Conference “EUSAIR and synergies with the EU Direct Funding Programmes”, 26 June, Brussels (Belgium)
- Conference “EUSAIR: The Role of the Regions in implementation” in the frame of OPEN DAYS, 7 October, Brussels (Belgium)
- Seminar “What future for Fisheries in the A-I Basin” and Meeting of the AIE Committee on Fisheries, 29/30 October, Termoli (Italy)
- Conference “The Role of the Youth Guarantee in the Implementation of the Structural Programmes 2014-20”, 28 November, Campobasso (Italy)
- 10th General Assembly of the Adriatic Ionian Euroregion”, 14 January, Rome (Italy)
- Round table on the Adrion Programme with the Managing Authorities of the main ETC programmes of the area, 20 March, Venafro (Italy)
- Commission for Economic Affairs and workshop “Women and the young community unexploited potentials in Montenegrin economy”, 25 March, Kotor (Montenegro)
- Conference “The European Union Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region: challenges and opportunities for the Balkans in the future”, 15 May, Tirana (Albania)
- Conference “Targeting integration and development policies in the Adriatic and Ionian Region: Balkans 2020 toolkits”, 25 May Campobasso (Italy)
- Thematic Commission on Fisheries and Aquaculture “Joint planning for the sustainable fisheries and aquaculture development at macro-regional level: new challenges and perspectives” and Workshop “Fisheries and Aquaculture Management and Development in compliance with EU planning and Macro-regional Strategy”, 22-26 July, Ioannina (Greece)
- 11th Extraordinary Plenary Assembly and workshop “Promotional Laboratory of the Adriatic-Ionian School of political and administrative studies” organised by Emilia Romagna in Milan in the frame of EXPO, 21/22 September, Milan (Italy)
- XII General elective assembly of the AIE Round Table at European Parliament “Build up the new Europe with the Macro-regional Strategies: the EUSAIR experience”, 2 December, Brussels (Belgium)
- Conference “Connecting the Adriatic area, the TEN-T network: from political project to implementation”, 15 January, Pescara (Italy)
- Executive Committee, 10 February, Brussels (Belgium)
- Thematic session on fisheries and aquaculture, 115-17 March, Ioannina (Greece)
- Presidency Bureau and Conference: “Agro Tourism Development: a Tool for the Social Economic Growth of our Adriatic Ionian Regions”, 26 April, Tirana (Albania)
- Conference “The territorial cooperation in the Adriatic-Ionian macroregion and EUSAIR Strategy. Opportunities, Competitiveness and Connectivity”, 27 April, Shkoder (Albania)