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Baltic Sea strategy open to all

  • 2007-12-17
  • In cooperation with BNS
BRUSSELS -- The Baltic Sea strategy, whichwas given a preliminary endorsement at the European Councilwill be open to all, Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansipsaid in Brussels on Friday.

The final conclusion of the European Council noted the Swedish initiative to work out the European Union'sBaltic Sea strategy.

"I can say that we will shape the Baltic Sea strategy so that cooperation will be open to all applicants, Ansip said in Brussels during a EuropeanCouncil meeting.

"As we know there is also a Mediterranean initiative,which has been criticized by [German chancellor]Angela Merkel for taking advantage of the European Union inattempts to isolate one region from the rest of theEuropean Union," Ansip said, underlining that the Baltic Sea strategy initiated by Sweden would not turninto anything similar.

"We are not planning to use means of the EuropeanUnion in some way of becoming self-absorbed. On thecontrary, one of the keywords in working out the Baltic Sea strategy will be openness," Ansip said.

"Working out the Baltic Sea strategy is a reality andpreparatory work for this is already going on in Estonia."

Regional cooperation and development of the Baltic Sea region is of growing importance from the point of view ofthe whole European Union, the government communicationoffice mediated the prime minister's view.

The Baltic Sea strategy mentioned in the EuropeanCouncil conclusions embraces issues of economic, transportand research cooperation as well a environmental issues.The strategy is intended to win more attention to theBaltic Sea area in the European Union and the hope is toshape it into a regional cooperation model for the wholeof the EU.

The strategy is likely to be passed during theSwedish presidency period in the second half of 2009.