The IPA Adriatic Cross-border Cooperation Programme is the result of joint programming work carried out by the relevant participating countries and is part of the cooperation process in the Adriatic area. The Programme draws its strength and incisiveness from the wide experience, gained during the previous Programme period producing concrete results from the studies and analysis financed in the past.
Many factors make cooperation in the Adriatic area important today, particularly from a political and economic point of view:
- Factors connected to geographic and cultural proximity which make possible the intensification of multilateral relationships among Adriatic coastal regions to support local processes of harmonious growth, sustainable development and unity among peoples.
- Factors connected to the political stability of the area. Following ten years of conflict, the area is now moving towards progressive integration both "vertical" (within European and International institutions) and "horizontal" through the creation of a free trade area;
Eligible areas for Cross-Border Cooperation at EU external borders are identified in accordance with Article 88 (1) of the IPA Implementing Regulation:
(a) NUTS level 3 regions or, in the absence of NUTS classification, equivalent areas along land borders between the Community and the beneficiary countries;
(b) NUTS level 3 regions or, in the absence of NUTS classification, equivalent areas along maritime borders between the Community and the beneficiary countries separated, as a general rule, by a maximum of 150 kilometres, taking into account potential adjustments where needed to ensure the coherence and continuity of the cooperation action.
Territorial derogation in accordance with Article 97 of the IPA Implementing Regulation applies in Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro).
Three EU Member States (Italy, Slovenia and Greece), two Candidate Countries (Croatia and Montenegro) and two Potential Candidates Countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina and Albania) are participating in the Programme.
Additionally, a phasing out participation by Serbia is envisaged for joint projects in the field of institutional co–operation.