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First Border Focal Point Network’s breakfast meeting

On 5 February 2021 the Border Focal Point Network has organised the first of a series of online appointments to exchange on issues that affect citizens in border regions. The first edition of the Beyond Borders: Breakfast Debates was dedicated to two current topics: the delivery of cross-border public services and the impact of measures taken by Member States to limit the pandemic of Covid-19 on border regions.

Pascal Boijmans, Head of Unit, DG Regio at the European Commission welcomed the followers and presented the newly revamped Border Focal Point Network, a place for stakeholders to exchange information and connect.

Nicolas Rossignol, Head of Unit at ESPON, and Dirk Peters, Senior Expert at DG Regio, introduced the topic of cooperation in the EU, available tools and cross-border public services.

Brigitte van der Zanden, Director of the Support Office at euPrevent, and Julia Winkler, EU Project manager at the Cross-Border Health Agency of Lower Austria, Healthacross, showcased their own experiences of providing cross-border services in the field of health in European border regions, explaining especially how the pandemic, and the consequent closure of the borders, have stalled the capacity to deliver these services to citizens.

Nathalie Verschelde, Deputy Head of Unit at DG Regio, Jean Peyrony, Director General of MOT, and Martín Guillermo-Ramirez, Secretary General of AEBR, informed about the initiatives they are working on to support local and regional authorities, actors of cooperation and citizens in border regions.

Mr Karl-Heinz Lambertz, AEBR President, also took the floor, to highlight key arguments to be presented to national authorities, in particular to defend the ECBM. Mr Slaven Klobucar, EGTC Platform at the CoR, also intervened to briefly present CoR recent and future works to promote CBC and CB tools.

The recording of the whole event, the presentations and other details are available on the online platform of the Border Focal Point.

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