The Kvarken region covers some of the best developed regions in northern Scandinavia, with high growth potential, a wide range of industries and businesses, exceptionally high degree of industrial refinement, export industry and significant population growth.
During the past year, I have had several occasions to highlight examples of cooperation in our cross-border region and also possible future cooperation opportunities. Examples of concrete and varied cross-border cooperation forms where the Kvarken Council has been an active promoter, include e.g. the world's second cross-border port enterprise Kvarken Ports and the joint shipping company established for the Kvarken traffic and owned by Vaasa and Umeå. Furthermore, I have been able to recount that the Kvarken region aims at taking cooperation one step further and that we have reintroduced the discussions for establishing an EGTC area for cross-border cooperation. This discussion is part of the Interreg/Botnia-Atlantica funded E12 Atlantica Transport project.
I am very interested in all types of cross-border cooperation. A couple of weeks ago I attended a meeting where we discussed the possibilities for future cross-border cooperation between universities. This work is already taking a concrete form with e.g. joint cross-border courses. I believe that efficient use of resources is crucial for the competitiveness of regions and for the future and wellbeing of individuals. The Kvarken Council encourages actively for all types of cooperation, ranging from grassroots level to trade and industry and universities. Also the world's leading enterprises of various sizes have taken an active part in various cooperation projects. I am convinced that we in the Kvarken region, with joint solutions which see beyond the national boundaries, can together develop an international university cluster, and also strong business life, integrated transports, effective health care, etc.
Together we have the chance to use our resources better to develop and modernise our region and to create a strong cross-border cooperation area which is a serious player in the European arena.
Chairman of the Board