Three objectives of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region


The European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) was adopted under the Swedish Presidency of the EU in 2009. Its aim is to address the common challenges facing the countries in the Baltic Sea Region. The Strategy has three overall objectives: save the sea, connect the region and increase prosperity. Each objective has four sub-objectives.

Objectives of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region:

Save the sea

Today, eight of the nine countries around the Baltic Sea are EU Member States. This means that we can seize the opportunities that EU membership offers to, for example, speed up our efforts to combat eutrophication, safeguard shipping, protect endangered species and prevent the spread of hazardous chemicals.

The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region aims to build consensus on how the resources of the region can be used and managed in a sustainable and effective way without being exhausted. A healthy sea creates employment opportunities in both tourism and fishing, and contributes to the region’s prosperity.


  • Clear water in the sea
  • Rich and healthy wildlife
  • Clean and safe shipping
  • Better cooperation

Connect the region

The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region aims to facilitate closer cooperation and bring the region together again after years of political and historical division. This includes integrating the road and rail networks, and linking the energy markets.

It is equally important for people to be able to meet and work together in the context of student exchanges, research cooperation, cultural exchanges, etc. It is also important to use the EUSBSR as a platform for closer cooperation to combat cross-border crime in the region.


  • Good transport conditions
  • Reliable energy markets
  • Connecting people in the region
  • Better cooperation in fighting cross-border crime

Increase prosperity

All parties to the EUSBSR belong to the EU Single Market. This facilitates increased trade and the removal of trade barriers, and helps to achieve the Europe 2020 Strategy objectives of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The EUSBSR aims to contribute to increased prosperity through measures to stimulate the exchange of skills, research and innovation, and to reduce social and economic disparities in the region.

The countries of the Baltic Sea Region – with a population of some 80 million – are our nearest neighbours and main trade partners. A well-functioning local market is often key to business expansion. Efforts to support trade and growth in our immediate neighbourhood thus help to shore up the region’s global competitiveness.


  • Baltic Sea region as a frontrunner for deepening and fulfilling the single market
  • EUSBSR contributing to the implementation of Europe 2020 Strategy
  • Improved global competitiveness of the Baltic Sea region
  • Climate change adaption, risk prevention and management

Cross-cutting approach

These objectives are interrelated and mutually reinforcing. The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region, like other EU macro-regional strategies, represents a completely new cross-cutting approach by the EU and is supported by all EU Member States. It brings together sectors and actors from local, regional, national and EU levels and ensures that good practices are shared throughout the region.