The European Commission interested in cross-border health projects’ success stories!
25 years of Interreg cooperation: this key program of the European cohesion policy focuses on European territorial cooperation which aims, through its many forms (cross-border, transnational, interregional), at overcoming the barriers left by borders and to convert them into development opportunities.
To celebrate this occasion, the European Commission is moving closer to borders, through a delegation of the DG Regio composed by Mrs Lena Andersson Pench, Director of regional Policy, Mrs Miriam Burajova, responsible for the France-Wallonie-Vlaanderen program and Mrs Nathalia Verschelde, Chief of cross-border cooperation service (DG Regio).
The delegation came on the Eurasanté Bio-business Park, to the Faculty of Pharmacy on September 25th, to become aware of the concrete achievements enabled by cross-border collaboration in the health field with examples such as Interreg IV A France-Wallonie-Vlaanderen projects, DIMETEX and Persomed or the Interreg 2 Seas AMPTEC cluster (Interreg IV A 2 Seas program).
This presentation was also delivered in front of representatives of the Conseil Régional Nord Pas de Calais (co-organizer of the visit), the technical Interreg Secretariats and representatives of project leaders and partners.
Etienne Vervaecke, Director of Eurasanté and NHL cluster recalled the importance of European territorial cooperation programs for a support system like Eurasanté in order to “assist our laboratories and companies in their internationalization efforts and facilitate their access to European markets, stimulate research and collaborative innovation at European level and initiate and capitalize on inter- clustering approaches and methods for exchanging good practices, and facilitate partner search.”
“Above all, he continues, cross-border cooperation helps to reduce disparities between regions, strengthen the cohesion of the “Euro-regions” and foster optimal territorial economic development, based on the implementation of territorial solutions to face territorial challenges. This clearly contributes to the attractiveness of our border region.”
Mrs Andersson-Pench presented, in the form of a multi-layered cake, the different achievements enabled by 25 years of cooperation : trust that serves as a common base, connectivity between the territories, environment and health, security and the ” cherry on the cake ” , growth and job creation in the regions.
The Commission chose to travel to 12 major European cities, including Lille, at border crossroads, to celebrate cross-border initiatives and launch a major public consultation about the remaining obstacles to cross-border collaboration. The Commission hopes that the mobilization will be important to respond to this consultation, when 37% of the EU population lives in cross-border areas.
To conclude the trip, a visit of the laboratory of Professor Juergen Siepmann, partner of cluster AMPTEC cluster and Director of the research unit INSERM U1008 – Drugs and Biomaterials at Controlled Release followed.