The Programme supports regional cooperation between Greece and the Republic of North Macedonia. The Programme’s overall objective is to enhance territorial cohesion by improving living standards and employment opportunities holding respect to the environment and by using the natural resources for upgrading of the tourism product. The Interreg IPA CBC Programme CCI 2014 TC 16 I5CB 009 was approved by the European Commission on August 6, 2015 by decision C (2015) 5655.
The INTERREG IPA Cross Border Cooperation Programme “Greece – Republic of North Macedonia 2014-2020” offers ample opportunities for cooperation, good neighborly relations and socio-economic development to our countries. Our cross border area enjoys the benefits of a vast, varied and mostly unspoiled natural environment; but it also faces many socio-economic challenges. This area where Thessaloniki, Kilkis, Edessa, Florina and Pella and Vardar, Pelagonia, Southeast and Southwest are located is the stage for the joint actions of our countries. Our joint Programme empowers public authorities, private non-profit organizations and other institutions as well as the citizens to work together on common challenges and problems, seeking for smarter solutions which can be better achieved when we cooperate.
Our problems may be separate or different but our actions are joint. It’s cooperation that teaches us to look for cooperation, join forces and share activities in all sectors of common interest, such as competitiveness, environment, tourism, transportation, employment, health and social issues. The European Union, Greece and the Republic of North Macedonia are offering more than 45.000.000€, from 2014 to 2020 to support our work. From creating new jobs to respecting the environment in our area, jointly we learn to understand each other. Our common target is a better everyday life. The Programme is built upon the following two Priority Axes that reflect the needs and challenges identified; Priority Axis 1: Development and Support of Local Economy Priority Axis 2: Protection of Environment – Transportation.
European Territorial Cooperation (ETC), better known as Interreg, is one of the two goals of the EU Cohesion Policy and provides a framework for the implementation of joint actions and policy exchanges between national, regional and local actors from different Member States.
The overarching objective of European Territorial Cooperation (ETC) is to promote a harmonious economic, social and territorial development of the Union as a whole.
Interreg is built around three strands of cooperation: Cross-border (Interreg A), Transnational (Interreg B), Interregional (Interreg C). Five programming periods of Interreg have succeeded each other: INTERREG I (1990-1993), INTERREG II (1994-1999), INTERREG III (2000-2006), INTERREG IV (2007-2013) & INTERREG V (2014-2020).
The eligible area of the INTERREG “Greece – Republic of North Macedonia 2014 – 2020” is:
- EL122 – Thessaloniki
- EL123 – Kilkis
- EL124 – Pella
- EL126 – Serres
- EL134 – Florina
- MK001 – Vardarski
- MK003 – Jugozapaden
- MK004 – Jugoistočen
- MK005 – Pelagoniski
The total budget allocated to the Programme is 45.470.066,00€, out of which 38.649.552,00€ (85%) is Union Support and the 6.820.514,00€ (15%) the National Counterpart.
The Programme is built upon the following three Priority Axes;
Priority Axis 1: Development and Support of Local Economy
Priority Axis 2: Protection of Environment – Transportation
Priority Axis 3: Technical support
- Improved health and social services for the population living in the cross-border region
- Further jobs created in the tourism sector
- Improved access to local transport infrastructures, faster connections to main corridors, efficient border crossing services, transport services using innovative technologies
- Improved waste management or recycling systems
- Improved measures addressing natural risks (floods, forest fires) and environment protection