We attended the opening ceremony of European Capital of Culture that took place in Mons, on Saturday, January 24th. An estimated 100.000 people enjoyed various performances, exhibitions, shows and concerts scattered throughout the centre of this former industrial town. The project involved a lot of infrastructural investments: the new theatre and a new modern art gallery were built while some of the buildings were refurbished and turned into museums, galleries and other public spaces intended to host cultural events. Even though, some of the buildings were not yet finished or opened for public, plenty of happenings at different Mons locations forced the crowds to move around, giving the overall impression of a lot of movement and action.

The representatives of the European Capital of Culture project Varaždin2020 attended the opening ceremony by invitation from Mons2015 team following their meeting in October 2014. The main ceremony took place in St.…

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On January 21st, the Committee of the Regions and DG REGIO organised a meeting with regional representatives in Brussels to present the ideas and plans for this year's edition of European week of regions and cities. After the foreword by Laurent Thieule, Head of Communication, Press and Events Directorate at the Committee of the Regions, who chaired the meeting, word was given to Walter Deffaa, DG REGIO Director General, who spoke about last year's successful OPEN DAYS. 

Last year OPEN DAYS attracted over 5.500 participants from 192 partner regions and cities. 93% of the participants evaluated the debates and workshops to be excellent or good, so changing of the winning formula does not seem necessary. However, to keep things interesting, some novelties to the concept will be introduced this year.

First of all, Regio Stars AwardCeremony will be an integrated part of the OPEN DAYS programme, taking place on…

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Organised by Ms Tijana Tufek, a student of the International School for Protocol and Diplomacy, the Cultural Night Croatia gathered a mixed audience of both Croatian and other European nationalities. The event offered an opportunity for networking while enjoying Croatian wines, cheese and delicious home-made fritule. 

The materials highlighting Croatian Regions Office members' touristic potential and investment opportunities were displayed at the venue.

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Croatian Regions Office participated at the CoR's Lunchtime Briefing on European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and European Social Fund (ESF).

After a foreword by Wolfgang Petzold from the Committee of the Regions, the ERDF and ESF were presented by Lena Andersson Pench from DG Regional and Urban Policy and Peter Stub Jørgensen from DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion.


So far, 18 countries have finished negotiations and have all operational programmes (OPs) adopted, which makes for 63% of all OPs. Summary of the programmes is available here.
This is a very good result achieved thanks to the efforts from the Commission, the Member States and the regions. There is another 10% of OPs in the so-called carry-over phase for which the negotiations have been finished. The main issues in the negotiations have been making more result-oriented OPs. Indicators and baselines were disussed and reaffirmed. The goal is for the adopted OPs…

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European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation (EGTC) is a cooperation instrument established in 2006 by Regulation (EC) 1082/2006. It allows public entities of Member States (two states minimum) to get together under a new entity with full legal personality.

The meeting that took place in Brussels on January 15th was aimed to gather all of the regional representatives representing the regions involved in EGTCs in one place to better exchange contacts and information. It was initiated by the Representation Office of Lower Silesia and the EGTC team at the Committee of the Regions and had gathered around 20 regional representatives. Croatian Regions Office attended on behalf of Varaždin and Zagreb County, the signatories of CETC - Route 65.

Mr Alfonso Alcolea from the CoR who chaired the meeting introduced the current state of play, major achievements in 2014 and the work plan and prospects for 2015. There are currently 50 EGTCs in…

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This year's EU Sustainable Energy Week is taking place in Brussels and across Europe from June 15th to 19th. It will be an opportunity for different stakeholders to showcase their sustainable energy commitments and compare results.

The European Commission invites all interested parties to be a part of it by organising an Energy Day, attending one of the hundreds of events taking place throughout Europe during June 2015 or applying for a Sustainable Energy Europe Award. The awards are presented to successful energy projects in three categories: renewable energy, energy efficiency and cities, communities and regions. Award eligibility and criteria are listed here, the first evaluation date is January 31st, the second February 28th. 

To be updated on the newest EUSEW information, you can use the EUSEW website from which you can also subscribe to the newsletter or follow EUSEW on social networks.

As of 2015 Croatian Regions Office will represent Bjelovar-Bilogora County and Međimurje County in addition to our existing members. The delegations from both counties have visited Croatian Regions Office in December to get acquainted with the work we do and discuss their own needs and expectations from this collaboration. 

The County Prefects, Mr Damir Bajs for Bjelovar-Bilogora and Mr Matija Posavec for Međimurje County have used this opportunity to sign the letter of intent to outline the specifics of the collaboration which was presented and voted on later in the year at the respective county councils.

Croatian Regions Office welcomes the new members and is looking forward to working with them to help them gain more visibility and establish new partnerships in the EU network of regions.

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In December, Croatian Regions Office, Varaždin and Bjelovar-Bilogora County, visited the Assembly of European Regions. The acting Secretary General, Mr Mathieu Mori, and Ms Regine Kramer, Coordinator for Member relations, explained the structure of the AER, how it works for the regions and presented the benfits opportunities included in the AER membership.


The visit also happily coincided with the recent appointment of the new AER Youth Regional Network President, Mr Mario Žuliček, who is from Varaždin County. Congratulations!

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EURegions Week 2017

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