EU Cohesion policy: Commission launches public consultation for a new strategic approach for the outermost regions

Today the Commission has launched a public consultation to gather views for a new strategic approach to the outermost regions for a green, digital and fair recovery. Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms, Elisa Ferreira, said: “The EU outermost regions harbour unique assets for the EU, such as rich biodiversity, strategic location for space and astrophysics activities, vast maritime zones, proximity to third countries. These regions have also the potential to become innovation incubators for a green and digital transition. The time has come to redesign the strategic approach towards the outermost regions and therefore I encourage all relevant stakeholders, citizens and civil society, local, regional and national authorities, to share their views to shape it together.” The EU’s outermost regions – Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Mayotte, Reunion Island and Saint-Martin (France), the Azores and Madeira (Portugal) and the Canary Islands (Spain) – are located in the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, South America and the Indian Ocean. Due to the constraint of their extreme remoteness, small size and vulnerability to climate change, the EU provides specific support measures towards these regions, including tailored conditions for the implementation of EU legislation and access to EU programmes. The Commission intends to renew its strategic partnership with the outermost regions, adapting it to the EU priorities on green and digital transition for a stronger recovery after the coronavirus pandemic. The results of the public consultation will feed into a new Communication setting up the priorities for the strategic approach and partnership with these regions to be adopted in 2022. The public consultation is available here and will be open until 4 November. More information is available on the Outermost regions webpage.