The 2nd EUSDR National Coordinators meeting

2nd meeting of EU Strategy for Danube Region National Coordinators was held with representatives of European Commission Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy and the Danube Transnational Programme on 25 May 2020 via on line platform. Main points on its agenda included the new EU Strategy for Danube Region Action Plan – recap of final steps and outlook, the embedding of the Strategy into mainstream programmes in the upcoming EU funding period 2021-2027 and its link to the EU Multiannual Financial Framework. Also, the consensus on documents related to the EU Strategy for Danube Region Governance Paper and Rules of Procedures was reached.

Regarding the embedding process the Croatian Presidency informed that EU Strategy for Danube Region Priority Areas were asked to propose a shortlist of up to three strategic topics to be included in the relevant national/regional operational programmes as well as regarding the embedding for the 2nd Seed Money Facility Call of the Danube Transnational Programme. Due to the COVID-19 crisis it is rather unlikely that the 2nd Seed Money Facility Call will be opened but the decision lies with the Danube Transnational Programme Monitoring Committee.

The Croatian Presidency reported that almost all PAs submitted their shortlists. Regarding the consolidated feedback of PAC proposals for embedding the Croatian Presidency together with the Danube Strategy Point will compose a comprehensive document to be sent to the National Coordinators who are expected to consult with their Managing Authorities responsible on the national or local level. The Croatian Presidency admits that the proposals in terms of content diverged from original expectations, as they might be too general or too broadly focused to be fundable by mainstream programmes.

The agenda of the meeting was devoted to issues of finalisation of the EU Strategy for Danube Region Governance Paper and the National Coordinators Rules of Procedure for improved communication, organisation, and implementation of the Strategy.

The Croatian Presidency informed the participants that no decision is expected on the documents; the goal of the meeting was to reach consensus on wording, so the documents can be approved in written procedure. Drafts of the documents were discussed in several rounds, including the National Coordinators meeting in November 2019 and changes were made according to the comments received.