Meeting of specialists in the field of cross-border culture and tourism organized in Kastoria within the project EPICAH – Effectiveness of Policy Instruments for Cross – Border Advancement in Heritage
Region of Western Macedonia from Kozani-Greece organized from 4-6 June 2018 the forth cross-border culture experts meeting within the framework of the EPICAH – Effectiveness of Policy Instruments for Cross – Border Advancement in Heritage project. Also during this period was held the fifth meeting of the project Steering Committee consisting of the project managers from each partner. At these meetings were discussed and clarified issues related to the project management and its main activities. Was discussed the Experts Report about “How is being enhanced the border effect in the protection and development of natural and cultural cross-border heritage in Europe” sent to the European Commission.
The meeting was attended by specialists in the field of cross-border culture as well as project managers representing all 9 partners: Eixo Atlántico do Noroeste Peninsular from Braga -Portugal having the role of lead partner, Eixo Atlantico del Noroeste Peninsular-Vigo and Asociación Ibérica de Municipios Ribereños del Duero from Spain, Agenzia per lo Sviluppo Empolese Valdelsa Spa from Empoli-Italy, Tokaj Borvidék Fejlődéséért Nonprofit Kft.-Hungary, Regional Development Fund / Region of Western Macedonia from Kozani-Greece, Peipsi Koostöö Keskus from Tartu-Estonia, Regionální rozvojová agentura Plzeňského kraje, o. p. s. from Plzeň-Czech Republic, Satu Mare County Intercommunity Development Association. The Satu Mare County Intercommunity Development Association was represented at this meeting by Paul Dancu–assistant project coordinator within the project, Daniela Culic – manager of Satu Mare Chamber for Commerce and Industry as member of the local stakeholders group and Jankó-Szép István, councilor in Regional Development Office of Satu Mare County Council, member of the local stakeholders group who also attended the experts meeting.
In 5 June were held in Kastoria 2 parallel sessions of Experts and Steering Committee. In the experts meeting were discussed the structure for regional action plans in touristic, natural and cultural heritage. In the frame of Steering Commitee session were discussed and clarified issues related to the project management and its main activities, and the project implemenation at partners level. The sessions merged at the end of the morning in the Joint Experts/Partners Third Thematic Seminar on „New approaches given at the local, regional andcross border european cooperation level on tourism sector”. The first pannel of the seminar was focused on exploring and identifying the best practices for the improvement of tourism sector in European border areas within EPICAH project. The second pannel about recent and new initiatives and projects aiming to sustainable tourism development in border areas of Western Macedonia, focused in natural and cultural heritage. The third pannel presented the Past, Present and Future of the crossborder cooperation in the frame of cross-border programmes Greece-Albania and Greece-FYROM. In the afternoon was done the Study Visit to Zamora, focused on good practices about valorization of cultural and touristic heritage.
In 6 June the seminar was followed by a study visit in Prespas Lakes Area, focused on good practices about valorization of touristic, cultural and natural heritage. After the study visit was held the second part of experts meeting, with debate and main conclusions about the study visit and thematic seminar.
The project EPICAH aims to promote the improvement of the policy instruments for crossborder natural and cultural heritage protection and development, through the exchange of experiences and good practices between partners with large experience in developing strategies, projects and actions in this field based on crossborder cooperation processes. Within this project, the policy makers and technicians responsible for protection and promotion of natural and cultural heritage in the Satu Mare County shall have the possibility to participate in exchanges of experience in the field of preservation, protection, promotion and development of natural and cultural heritage and to learn new methods to approach for a more efficient management process of crossborder natural and cultural heritage. The project is financed through the Interreg Europe Programme with a total budget of 1.707.360 EUR of which benefits a grant in value of 1.451.256 EUR from the European Regional Development Fund and has a implementation period of 5 years.