The 3rd Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region (EUSAIR) was held in the Benedictine Monastery of San Nicolò l’Arena in Catania, Sicily from 24th to 25th May 2018.

The Forum was organized under the Italian Presidency, focusing on transport and energy issues, as well as financing opportunities for the four pillars of the strategy and new projects for the macroregion. The Forum attracts several stakeholders mainly from public sector, academia, regional, national and EU level. In the course of two-days, participants attended also numerous side events.

The President of the Adriatic Ionian Euroregion, Nikola Dobroslavić was one of the panelists in the opening session, acting as chair of the Adriatic-Ionian Interregional Group of the Committee of the Regions. In his address at the opening of the Forum, President Dobroslavić spoke about the role of the European Committee of the Regions and its working bodies in support of the implementation of the EUSAIR Strategy.

He emphasized that we cannot be satisfied with the level of realized projects in the macroregion. He pointed out the importance of the multilevel governance approach and the need for a better use of the available EU funds. He stressed the importance to speed up the realization of projects, especially in the field of transport as a precondition for the overall development of the region.

In this sense, Dobroslavić emphasized the continuation of the construction of the Adriatic-Ionian motorway, the reconstruction of the railway line from Ravenna to Brindisi on the Italian coast, and the improvement of the overall air and sea connections. Dobroslavic spoke also about the migration challenges of the region, appreciating the European Commission’s initiative to increase the funds for migration in the next EU Multi-annual Financial Framework.

The high-level political representatives of the eight EUSAIR countries adopt during the Council Ministerial meeting the “Catania Declaration”.

Read the Declaration here.

The ministerial representatives of the 8 countries accepted the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) to become the ninth Participating Country of the Adriatic and Ionian Initiative and stressed out that the next step is on the Council of the European Union and the European Commission to undertake all necessary steps to include FYROM in the EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region.

For more information please see the official website: