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    shar ing exper iences in reg ional development pol ic ies

    Regional and Urban Policy

    Brussels, 10-11 June 2015

  • A report presented on the occasion of the Second EU-CELAC Summit

    "Shaping our common future: working for prosperous, cohesive and

    sustainable societies for our citizens",

    E U R O P E , L A T I N A M E R I C A A N D T H E C A R I B B E A N : s h a r i n g e x p e r i e n c e s i n

    r e g i o n a l d e v e l o p m e n t p o l i c i e s

  • European Commission, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy Communication Unit Mrs Ana-Paula Laissy Avenue de Beaulieu 1 – 1160 Brussels – BELGIUM Email: Internet:

    Editors: Ronald Hall; Ramon Lopez Sanchez

    More information on the European Union is available on the Internet (

    Cataloguing data can be found at the end of this publication.

    Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union, 2015

    ISBN: 978-92-79-48224-3 (print) ISBN: 978-92-79-48221-2 (online) doi 10.2776/996313 (print) doi 10.2776/8364 (online

    © European Union, 2015 Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.

    The opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Commission.

    Photographs (pages): Page 9: ©Purestock Page 10: ©iStock Page 12: ©iStock Page 13: ©iStock Page 15: ©Dimitry Saparov

    Printed in Luxembourg

    Europe Direct is a service to help you find answers to your questions about the European Union.

    Freephone number (*):

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  • Table of contents




    Regional Innovation Systems across borders p.11



    Examples of EU-LA actions in cross-border cooperation p.15

    EU-Argentina-Brazil-Uruguay p.15

    EU cross-border and transnational programmes in Latin America and the Caribbean p.16

    EU-Brazil-Peru p.17

    Central America p.17

    General lessons p.18


    EU-LA cooperation in sustainable urban development p.20

    Collaboration with the Regional Programme for Social Cohesion (EUROsociAL) p.20

  • 6

    "In the European Union, we attach major importance to the territorial dimension of economic development and economic development policy. Clearly, this is shared by our partners in Latin America as reflected in the inclusion of this issue as an agenda point in the EU-CELAC Summit in Brussels of June 2015. I look forward to the next phase in our cooperation on territorial policy issues, building on our successful exchanges over recent years on key topics such as sustainable regional and urban development, innovation systems and cross-border cooperation."

    Corina Creţu, Commissioner for Regional Policy

  • E U R O P E , L A T I N A M E R I C A A N D T H E C A R I B B E A N : s h a r i n g e x p e r i e n c e s i n r e g i o n a l d e v e l o p m e n t p o l i c i e s


    Gaining greater insight into the aims and methods of European Regional Policy has become particularly important in recent years for Latin American countries. It is enabling the latter to develop and implement policies to promote a more even pat- tern of economic development, thereby helping to boost nation- al competitiveness and levels of employment, while improving cross-border cooperation. Such is the importance of this field on the South American continent that a Red Latinoamericana de Políticas Públicas de Desarrollo Regional (Latin American Network of Public Policies on Regional Development) has been established, with EU support, bringing together 17 countries to exchange experience and best practices. And in the context of the broader Europe-Latin America relationship, the June 2015 Summit of the EU and the Community of Latin America and Caribbean States (CELAC) is themed on "Shaping our common future: working for prosperous, cohesive and sustainable socie- ties for our citizens", which as the title suggests, has a strong territorial development dimension.

    Since 2006, DG REGIO, representing the European Union, has been implementing a cooperation programme with emerging countries, supported to a very significant degree since 2009 by the European Parliament. This work has offered more than 25 years of European experience, through dialogue and exchange of good practice, to countries across the globe. At the centre of this cooperation is the interest outside the EU in the Euro- pean model of regional development, a model which is market- based, with tight rules to preserve competition and promote open public procurement, and which respects key principles such as good governance, equal opportunities, sustainable

    development and a widely-drawn participation in the concep- tion and implementation of development actions.

    Increasingly, the international dialogues involve the cities and regions on each side in a form of decentralized cooperation, involving the best in international expertise. In this way, the dia- logues are a networking opportunity for regional actors, while creating new business links and trading relations.

    For Latin American countries, a major part of the appeal of such cooperation lies in the possibility, through regional policy, to provide a new impetus to their policies and actions to reduce their wide internal income disparities, while addressing specific challenges such as under-performing multi-level governance systems, unsustainable urbanization, the relative under-de- velopment of many rural and border areas, and the European experience in territorial development in post-conflict situations (Colombia).

    There is particular interest in improved understanding of Euro- pean ideas in the field of regional innovation systems, in the light of the need to promote new opportunities in value-added sectors, and in that way to reduce the traditional dependence on primary products and extractive industries.


  • 8

    Brazil, a country of nearly twice the geographical size of the EU, and with 200 million of population, shares with the EU the political objective of reducing regional disparities, an aim which is provided for in Article 3 of the Brazilian Federal Constitution similar to the provisions of Article 174 of the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union.

    On 29 November 2007, the Ministry for National Integration (MIN) and the European Commission signed a cooperation agreement in order to establish a structured dialogue on re- gional policy to promote the exchange of information and best practice. This makes this the longest standing partnership on regional policy between the EU and a Latin American country. This relationship has been particularly intensive over the years and, since 2007, successive annual work programmes have been implemented covering areas of mutual interest. On the Brazilian side, the cooperation has been particularly focused on the design of the new generation regional policy, the second National Policy for Regional Development (PNDR II). The ba- sis for this new generation of regional policy emerged from a broadly-based First National Conference on Regional Develop- ment – organized by MIN in March 2013, and which resulted in a set of principles and guidelines agreed upon by both govern- ment and wider society, and providing the basis for the draft Law that has been sent to the Presidency for approval.

    As soon as the National Congress passes the PNDR legal frame- work, it becomes a state policy, greatly facilitating its coordina- tion vis-à-vis other federal and state government policies.

    Within the framework of the Brazil-EU partnership, capacity- building within the different levels of the administration has been a particular priority on the Brazilian side and experts from the Ministry of National Integration, employees of other federal agencies in Brazil with an interest in regional and territorial poli- cies and local and regional stakeholders, including representa- tives from municipalities, states, the university and private sec- tors have participated in several technical workshops on themes relating to the management of EU regional programmes.

    The cooperation has promoted exchanges of best practice and experience-sharing on both sides. Brazilian regional ac- tors have visited EU programmes in action in different EU re- gions such as France, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Germany. One Brazilian delegation, drawn from nine "mesoregions", the border area and the Brazilian semi-arid region, visited EU regional pro- gramme areas with a view to learning about the promotion of the productive sector under EU regional programmes as well as about the multi-level management system that applies to European investment funds.

    Innovation, which plays a fundamental and increasingly im- portant role in EU regional policy, has also been important in the Brazil-EU relationship, as reflected in the multi-country ac- tion study of "Regional In


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