European Territorial Cooperation
ETC has been a part of cohesion policy since 1990. It is the instrument that is designed to solve problems that transcend national borders and require a common solution and to jointly develop the potential of diverse territories.
The amount allocated to ETC for the 2021-2027 budgetary period is 8 billion EUR. These resources will support cooperation across borders through numerous INTERREG programmes divided over three categories: :
72,2% of total resources
These programmes aim to bring together regions or local authorities having a common land border in order to develop the border areas, exploit their untapped growth potential and tackle jointly identified common challenges.
Transnational and maritime cooperation
18.2 % of total resources
These programmes cover larger transnational and around sea-basins territories and aim to strengthen cooperation on the basis of actions that promote integrated territorial development between national, regional and local entities in large European geographical areas.
6.1 % of total resources
These programmes aim to reinforce the effectiveness of cohesion policy on the basis of actions that promote exchanges of experience between regions on issues such as design and implementation of programmes, sustainable urban development.
The Romania – Bulgaria Cross Border Cooperation Programme is part of the INTERREG A family. Its goal is to develop the border area between the two countries by supporting joint initiatives that look for solution of common challenges or common use of the untapped growth potential. It has run for 2 programing periods already and almost 350 projects have been implemented. Thus, approximately 476 million euros were invested in wide-range of interventions from improving accessibility and connectivity, to promoting socio-economic development, supporting environment protection, promoting human capital and improving governance.
The programmes target area consists of 7 counties in Romania (Mehedinti, Dolj, Olt, Teleorman, Giurgiu, Calarasi, Constanta) and 8 districts from Bulgaria (Vidin, Vratsa, Montana, Pleven, Veliko Tarnovo, Ruse, Silistra, Dobrich). That area faces some territorial challenges, incl.:
For the 2021 – 2027 period the Programme sets out 2 priorities:
Well connected region
An integrated region
Specific objective: Developing sustainable, climate resilient, intelligent and
intermodal national, regional and local mobility, including improved access to
TEN-T and cross-border mobility
Specific objective: Fostering the integrated social, economic and environmental
local development, cultural heritage and security, including for rural and coastal
areas also through community-led local development.