Cooperation can be complex;
our job is to make it easier.

Cross-border obstacles

Tackling cross-border obstacles and improving the lives of people living in cross border areas are core tasks of Interreg programmes. 

The 40 internal land borders of the EU are economically weaker than their national averages. Strengthening these regions offers opportunities to increase jobs, investment and the services available to citizens of such regions. Furthermore, these regions offer unique opportunities to strengthen European integration and build stronger more resilient border communities. Communities which share public services can better support the diversity of available services in these regions. They can also build a more vibrant and attractive labour market, as well as support the realisation of the Green Deal. More information about this work is available at DG REGIO's Border Focal Point.

Two core examples of the obstacles facing citizens which can be tackled through cooperation are public transport and healthcare in cross-border areas. The basic obstacles facing citizens include the validity of transit tickets in border regions, as well as the ability to access the nearest healthcare facilities, if it is on the other side of the border. Examples such as The EGTC-Hospital of Cerdanya shows the very tangible benefits of solving such issues for citizens on both sides of the border.

Interact works and supports exchange between Interreg programmes and other bodies active in tackling such obstacles, such as the Committee of the Regions, Association of European Border Regions (AEBR) and the Commission.  

Where to start 

The Commission publication on B-solutions: Solving border obstacles offers an overview of cross border obstacles and offers a number of case studies in tackling them.

What we are working on

Interact is facilitating the exchange of information with programmes. A session at the Interreg Knowledge Fair will enable the presentation of AEBR's B-solution platform to Interreg programmes, and offer an opportunity to exchange on this subject.