The CPMR’s Balkan & Black Sea Commission (BBSC) will take part in the event ‘Thinking Together Varna-2 Forum – The Black Sea: Confrontation or Cooperation?’

The event will be hosted by the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, the Solidarity Society Foundation and the Economics and International Relations Institute on 12-14 May in Varna, Bulgaria.

Following the first ‘Thinking Together Varna Forum’ in 2015, which set the beginning of a dedicated political discussion on the challenges to and prospects of the Black Sea region developments, the Thinking Together Varna-2 Forum aims to promote the design of an up-to-date EU strategy for the all-round development of the Black Sea as a new European Macroregion.

This part of the overall evolution of post 2020 European Territorial Cooperation within the context of the Sustainable Development Goals paradigm.

The upcoming Bulgarian and Romanian presidencies of the Council of the EU, which take place in first semesters of 2018 and 2019 respectively, offer an opportunity to elaborate and put in place a new strategy for the Black Sea in line with the general evolution of the Union’s 2030 policy horizon.

The discussions will be focused on the following themes:

  • The Black Sea – a European Backwater or a European Macro Region?
  • The Black Sea – Borderline or Bridge for the European Union – Eurasian Economic Union Interaction
  • The Black Sea Space – Minefield or Pillar in the Evolving European Security Landscape?

The BBSC will share its experience and expertise in facilitating cooperation between regional and local authorities and other directly interested stakeholders in the area, as well as driving forward initiatives for closer cooperation at sea-basin level.