8 March 2013 - AEBR Executive Committee Meeting in Santiago de Compostela, Galicia (ES):


On invitation of the Region of Galicia (Spain), 35 representatives of European Border and Cross-Border Regions met on 8th March 2013 from 09:30 to 13:30 in the Ciudad de la Cultura ( in Santiago de Compostela.

 The President of the AEBR, Mr Karl-Heinz Lambertz, and Ms Elena Muñoz Fonteriz, Regional Minister of Finance of Galicia, opened the meeting and welcomed the participants.

In her welcome speech, Ms Muñoz Fonteriz stressed that cooperation would be a way to integration, as stable cooperation networks can overcome the obstacles caused by borders. In the case of Galicia-Norte de Portugal this would happen with institutional support and financial support of the EU. Despite of the crisis, prosperity and sustainable growth could be realised by means of the critical mass created by cooperation on all levels. Items like security, innovation, research and science as well as cooperation of costal areas would be crucial for regional cooperation. The Minister also mentioned the importance of the work of the AEBR in this regard.

On the future of cohesion, Mr Lambertz stated that it would still be a long way to European integration. It would be necessary to prove the added value of AEBR’s work by valuable cross-border cooperation projects.

After the approval of the minutes of the meeting held in Berlin in November 2012, Mr. José Antonio Ruiz de Casas of the European Commission (DG REGIO) took the floor in order to discuss the Cohesion package 2014-2020. 

The Secretary General presented a brief information on finalized projects (DG Employment’s on CB Labour Market, ESPON’s ULYSSES, GRUNDTVIG’s SCULTBORD, DG Regio’s Paraná and Latin America II) and on-going projects (DG Regio’s Central America, Latin America III and West Africa).

Especially with regard to the labour market project, it was emphasised that a follow-up would be absolutely needed. A stakeholders’ consultation would be held at the CoR to get further input for a CoR’s own on initiative of AEBR President Karl-Heinz Lambertz (rapporteur). AEBR Secretary General Martín Guillermo has been appointed as Mr. Lambertz’s expert for this report. 10 years have passed since the CoR’s first opinion on this topic, so it is a good moment to review the situation again.

The participants of the Executive Committee meeting also rendered tribute to Xavier Gizard, former Secretary General of the CPRM, who passed away in February 2013.

With regard to the next AEBR General Assembly and Annual Conference, the date was finally confirmed: 7 – 9 November in Liège (Belgium) and Maastricht (the Netherlands).

The next meeting of the AEBR Executive Committee was also announced to take place at the East Border Region (Ireland/Northern Ireland) on 14th June 2013. An AEBR Forum is foreseen the previous day.

Towards the end of the meeting, the AEBR Task Forces were given the opportunity to present their activities, especially the workshop of TF Culture in April as well as the AEBR Youth Summer Forum 2013, organised by the TF External Borders in cooperation with this year’s host Euroregion Nestos Mesta. Details about these events will soon be available in the AEBR website.

In the afternoon, three workshops were organized by the Task Forces Culture, External Borders and Interreg.

Last but not least, an initiative to shoot a documentary about cross-border cooperation and European integration was presented for reflection to the members of the Executive Committee.


->Photo Gallery of the AEBR events in Santiago de Compostela. 

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