In order to develop the joint region and improve the life quality in different fields, 14 new Estonian-Latvian cooperation projects for altogether 5,5 million euro will be started in the nearest future. These projects were selected for financing following a competition in the Estonia – Latvia Programme.
The initiatives include cooperation between the Estonian and Latvian first aid services for better coordination and higher service quality, reconstruction and paving of the cross-border road Killingi-Nõmme – Mazsalaca, cooperation of the local pharmaceutical companies in order to develop a new antiviral drug, development of a joint organically grown potato production chain and strengthening of the ties between the local food producers and gourmet restaurants.
Estonia – Latvia Programme has previously supported already 37 cross-border projects in different fields to facilitate development and economic competitiveness in the region.
The financing decisions for the new projects were made at the Programme’s Monitoring Committee meeting on 26-27 May in Jūrmala, Latvia.
Background information: summaries of the supported projects
Reconstruction of the Road Killingi-Nõmme – Mazsalaca
The project plans to solve the problem of limited accessibility of the border region by reconstructing and paving the road from Killingi-Nõmme (Estonia) to Mazsalaca (Latvia). This will significantly improve the situation for the local inhabitants, who currently suffer from the dust and bad road conditions, and will make the region more attractive and accessible for tourists and cargo carriers.
In order to improve and harmonize the emergency medical services in the Estonian – Latvian border region, a cooperation project will be carried out between the Estonian Health Board, State Emergency Medical Service of Latvia, Vidzeme Hospital (LV) and Valga Hospital (EE). Managerial cooperation for harmonizing procedures and joint trainings for medical personnel will enable EMS crews to provide services of equally high quality to residents throughout the region.
Joint standards and plan for managing the water quality and resources of the Gauja/Koiva River, shared by Latvians and Estonians – this is the goal for cooperation among Latvian Institute of Aquatic Ecology, Latvian Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development, Biology Institute of Latvian University, Baltic Environmental Forum in Estonia and Latvia, Tallinn Technological University and Estonian University of Life Sciences.
Improved services for the visitors of the botanical gardens will be insured through cooperation between the Latvian National Botanic Garden, Tartu University Botanical Garden and its Society of Friends (EE) and the Environmental Development Association of Latvia. The project will provide an interactive map for visitors,topographic maps, plant database, as well as important experience exchange for personnel of the Latvian and Estonian botanic gardens.
In a joint project of the Latvian Nature Conservation Agency and Estonian Environmental Board Põlva-Valga-Võru region administration it is planned to identify and map key ecosystems, habitats, and species in the border areas and develop a joint plan for protection of the biological and landscape diversity in the border region.
Latvian Fund of Nature will cooperate with Estonian Ornithology Society to carry out a joint research and monitoring of the White-tailed Eagle and Osprey in both countries. Project will also educate the relevant stakeholders, students and general public on these eagle species.
In order to help the small and medium enterprises and start-ups access the cross-border market, as well as facilitate cross-border partnerships in different fields, a joint project with wide range of activities will be carried out in cooperation between the Latvian Chamber of Commerce, Estonian Business Chamber in Latvia, Tartu and Valga municipalities (EE) and Vidzeme Regional Vocational Education Development and Competence Centre (LV).
Seven actors of the organic farming field plan to jointly facilitate the competitiveness of the Estonian and Latvian organic potatoes and create a joint production chain. The project partners are Ltd. Aloja Starkelsen (LV), Potato Growers and Producers Association (LV), Association of Latvian Organic Agriculture, Estonian Biodynamic Association, State Plant Breeding Institute of Priekuļi (LV), Jõgeva Plant Breeding Institute (EE) and Institute of Economics of the Academy of Science of Latvia.
Two experienced local companies operating in the field of synthetic chemistry and pharmacy plan to cooperate to develop a new antiviral drug. The Estonian company TDB-Biodiscovery is competent in synthesis and scientific research, whereas Latvian company Grindeks is experienced in drug production. Merging the competence through cross-border partnership will promote the development of pharmaceutical business in the region.
The project aims at strengthening the ties between the rural food producers and gourmet restaurants, promoting quality local products and culinary heritage in restaurants and gourmet sector. It will be achieved through joint trainings and experience exchanges for rural producers, as well as networking events with gourmet sector representatives.
Youth Initiatives and Co-operation
Ventspils Youth Council (LV) and Leisi parish supported NGO Triigi Adventure Beach in Saaremaa (EE) will jointly organize informal and interest education activities for youth, focusing on various social and economic topics – youth employment and entrepreneurship, youth media, health and social responsibility and cooperation in various creative fields.
Est-Lat Urban Activists
Active community cooperation will start between the activists in Tartu and Riga, interested in participation in the planning of the urban living environment. There will be number of people to people cooperation activities and active networking among several non-profit organisations, including the main implementers - Estonian Urban Lab and Society Technologies Foundation in Latvia.
Artists for Development
Cēsis Culture and Tourism Centre (LV), Tartu Centre for Creative Industries (EE) and NGO Trīs krāsas (LV) will work together to strengthen the role of artists in the community life. Estonian and Latvian activists of various creative fields will be engaged in cultural exchange, as well as jointly trained to get more actively involved in cooperation with businesses, regional development and solving of various locally important social issues.
Hobby Slot Car Racing
The project will build up ties between the youth from Sindi (ee) and Limbaži (LV) neighbourhoods, who are united by the hobby of slot car racing. Within the project, the municipalities of Sindi and Limbaži will develop slot car tracks and organize joint experience and cultural exchange camps for the youngsters.