European territorial cooperation

European Community initiative INTERREG III (2000-2006) aimed to strengthen European Union social and economic cohesion, to promote cohesive, well balanced and sustained development of all European Union territory by improving frontier, international and interregional cooperation. The Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania (MoI) were coordinating INTERREG III programmes implementation in Lithuania since 2003. MoI was the managing authority for INTERREG IIIA programme between Lithuania, Poland and Kaliningrad Region (Russian Federation), also were coordinating the implementation of INTERREG IIIA programme between Lithuania, Latvia and Belarus, Baltic Sea Region INTERREG IIIB and INTERREG IIIC programmes. 22,4 MEUR were allocated for implementation of all three strands (programmes) under INTERREG III initiative in Lithuania for 2004-2006 by the European Regional Development Fund. Currently the closure activities of the programmes are carried out.

European territorial cooperation programmes

During the period of 2007-2013 the European Community initiative INTERREG III programmes at the internal EU borders are transforming into European Territorial Co-operation Objective. European Territorial Cooperation is introduced as a fully-fledged objective of Cohesion Policy and co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

The Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Lithuania is coordinating the implementation of the 5 programmes in Lithuania and performing the functions of the Managing Authority and the Audit Authority for one programme - Lithuania and Poland Cross-border Cooperation Programme.

There are 3 dimensions of European Territorial Cooperation:

Cross-border Cooperation: helps transform regions located on either side of internal or external borders of the European Union into strong economic and social poles. In particular cross-border actions are encouraged in the fields of entrepreneurship, improving joint management of natural resources, supporting links between urban and rural areas, improving access to transport and communication networks, developing joint use of infrastructure, administrative cooperation and capacity building, employment, community interaction, culture and social affairs. Programmes where Lithuania is participating:

Lithuania-Poland Cross-border Cooperation Programme

The overall strategic goal of the Programme is to foster the sustainable development of the border region through enhanced economic, social and territorial cohesion of the areas on both sides of the border.

Managing AuthorityThe Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania.
Programme area
  • In Lithuania: Marijampole and Alytus Counties and 3 adjacent areas:Vilnius excluding municipality of Vilnius City, Kaunas and Taurage Counties.
  • In Poland: Białostocko-Suwalski and Elcki Subregions and as adjacent areas Lomżyński and Olsztynski Subregions.
Programme budget71,7 MEUR of ERDF.

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Latvia–Lithuania Cross-border Cooperation Programme

The overall objective of the Programme is to promote sustainable and equal socio-economic development in border regions to make it competitive for economical and business development and attractive for living and visiting.

Managing AuthorityThe Ministry of Regional Development and Local Governments of Latvia.
Programme area
  • Latvia: Kurzeme, Zemgale, Latgale.
  • Lithuania: Klaipeda, Telsiai, Siauliai, Panevezys, Utena Counties and Kaunas County as adjoining region.
Programme budget63,9 MEUR of ERDF.

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South Baltic cross-border cooperation programme

In formal terms, the South Baltic Programme it is the so-called multilateral cross-border cooperation programme created on the maritime border between the southern Baltic Sea regions. In practical terms the South Baltic Programme is a completely new cooperation area where cross-border cooperation structures have not been set at a full scale yet.

The overall objective of the South Baltic Cross- border Cooperation Programme 2007 – 2013 is to strengthen the sustainable development of the South Baltic area through joint actions increasing its competitiveness and enhancing integration among people and institutions.

Managing AuthorityThe Ministry of Regional Development of Poland.

Programme area

  • Poland: Koszalinski, Stargardzki, miasto Szczecin, Szczeciński, Slupski, Gdanski, Trojmiejski, Starogardzki, sub-regions and as adjacent area Elblaski sub-region; Sweden: Kalmar län, Blekinge län, Skåne län and as adjacent area: Kronobergs län;
  • Germany: Sub-regions of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern: Greifswald, Rostock, Stralsund, Wismar, Bad Doberan, Nordvorpommern, Nordwestmecklenburg, Ostvorpommern, Rügen, Uecker-Randow;
  • Denmark: Bornholm and as adjacent area: Sjælland sub-regions: Østsjælland, Vest- og Sydsjælland;
  • Lihuania: Klaipeda Countys and as adjacent area: Telsiai and Taurage Counties.

Programme budget

60,7 MEUR of ERDF.

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Transnational Cooperation: promotes cooperation among greater European regions, including the ones surrounding sea basins (e.g. Baltic Sea Region, North Sea, Mediterranean and Atlantic Area) or mountain ranges (e.g. Alpine Space) and facilitates coordinated strategic responses to joint challenges like flood management, transport and communication corridors, international business and research linkages, urban development and others. Special attention is given to outermost and island regions (e.g. Indian Ocean, Caribbean Area or Northern Periphery). Related Programme:

Baltic Sea Region Programme 2007-2013

The general objective of the Programme is to strengthen the development towards a sustainable, competitive and territorially integrated Baltic Sea Region by joining physical and human resources over the borders. In other words, the aim is to make the Baltic Sea Region a better place for its citizens and other people to invest, work and live in.

Managing AuthorityInvestitionsbank Schleswig-Holstein (Germany)
Programme areaThe eligible area includes the EU Member States Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and northern parts of Germany, as well as the neighbouring countries Norway, Belarus and north-west regions of Russia.
Programme budget208 MEUR of ERDF.

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Interregional Cooperation: provides a framework for the exchange of experiences between local and regional actors from across Europe in order to contribute to the EU’s strategies on growth, jobs and sustainable development. In addition, it aims at reducing disparities by matching less experienced regions with more advanced regions in the various policy fields such as innovation, demographic change, energy supply and climate change.

INTERREG IVC programme 

The overall objective of the INTERREG IVC Programme is to improve the effectiveness of regional policies and instruments. A project builds on the exchange of experiences among partners who are ideally responsible for the development of their local and regional policies.

Managing AuthorityThe Conseil Régional Nord – Pas-de-Calais (France)
Programme area27 EU Member States, Norway, Switzerland.
Programme budget321 MEUR of ERDF.

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INTERACT Programme promotes and supports good governance of European Territorial Cooperation programmes

Logo of the Programme. The main focus of the acvtivities was on generating new knowledge and facilitating the exchange of know-how among the stakeholders of the INTERACT II target groups, specifically through seminar activities, the networks established, online dissemination tools and written guidance/contributing to the increase of efficiency and effectiveness of the Programmes, specifically through the expertise provided through seminar activities and written guidance, as well as the expert networks established.

Managing AuthorityBratislava Self-Governing Region, Slovakia
Programme area27 EU Member States, Norway, Switzerland.
Total budgetaround 40 million EUR for the period 2007-2013 (85% ERDF Funding).

More information on the website:

Last updated: 20-09-2023