Results of first call for projects of Interreg Europe have been released on 10th February 2016: among the selected projects is PASSAGE, which gathers 11 partners bordering maritime borders around the issue of low-carbon economy. Pas-de-Calais County Council, on Dover Strait, is the lead partner of this project which officially starts on 1st April 2016 following the fulfillment of the last required conditions for approval.

The project idea emerged from the fact that straits of Europe, hearts of maritime border regions, are important passage points and concentrate flows and activities resulting in an important carbon pressure. The objective of this project is to increase the consideration for the cross-cutting low-carbon challenge within five maritime border areas:

  • Dover Strait (French-British maritime border), with the involvement of Pas-de-Calais County Council (France) and Kent County Council (UK)
  • Gulf of Finland (in Central Baltic), involving Helsinki-Uusimaa regional council (Finland) and Harju County Government (Estonia)
  • Fehmarn Belt, on the Danish-German maritime border, with Fehmernbelt Development (Denmark)
  • Corsican Channel, between France and Italy, with the Chambers of commerce of Livorno (Italy) and Bastia Haute-Corse (France)
  • Straits of Otranto and Corfu, together with the Province of Lecce (Italy), Region Vlora (Albania), the Region of Ionian Islands (Greece) and InnoPolis (Greece).

All the partners will work towards better consideration of low-carbon challenge at cross-border level, in relation with the relevant cross-border cooperation programmes (Interreg V A). Local stakeholders from the partner regions will be involved through recurrent meetings.

The launching conference to be organised by Pas-de-Calais County Council will be the first step of the project, which will end in March 2020.