Joint efforts for Blue Growth in Baltic Sea Region
The Conference of Maritime Stakeholders Platform in the Baltic Sea Region in Kiel (26 & 27 March 2015) brought together key maritime stakeholders from business, academia and the public sector across the Baltic Sea region to discuss smart specialisation, maritime technologies and skills and employment.
The conference represents the first step of the European Commission's "Sustainable Blue Growth Agenda for the Baltic Sea Region" adopted in May 2014 to promote the maritime potential of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.
Recent studies suggest that the most promising avenues for development in the region are short-sea shipping, coastal and cruise tourism, offshore wind, shipbuilding, aquaculture, blue biotechnologies, better use of maritime cluster potential, as well as engaging the business and research community more closely in policy planning and its development.
The coastal countries can take full advantage of the opportunities offered by the sea by better planning of their maritime space, by integrating development processes across different sectors and by widening the scope for smart infrastructures. Innovation focusing on maritime technologies, renewable energy, port reception facilities, maritime and coastal tourism and aquaculture can contribute to the economic strength of the region. The European Commission reaffirms its commitment to help in appropriate capacity building and in improving the coordination mechanisms in Baltic coastal states in order to achieve more growth in the region.
The discussions in Kiel's conference confirmed that a stakeholder-driven, cross-Baltic joined effort for Blue Growth in the Baltic Sea Region is already in place.