Baltic Sea Conference 2013

The “Baltic Sea Conference 2013 – Blue Growth, Sustainability and Water Industries”

The conference gathered 300 participants (coming from the private sector, the European Commission, NGOs, international financing institutions and government) in Copenhagen on 3 October, to engage how to create a Baltic Sea Region – sustainable and prosperous and puts the blue and green economies in focus.

Participants looked at opportunities to seize, such as blue biotechnology, ocean energy or maritime tourism and assure operational conditions for businesses, estimated that spatial planning alone could bring between 170 million to 1.3 billion euro by 2020 in cost savings in Europe, (not to mention the reduction of administrative burden). Marine knowledge should bring further benefits of 500 million euro a year, making sure that the new European funds support Blue Growth and sea-basin strategies.

European Commission worked on the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy – and have an agreement to change the way of fishing and stop the waste of unwanted catches. It is agreement about sustainability, which will increase profits (maximize the output  from fisheries). Offshore wind energy shows double-digit growth figures; the cruise sector is growing at almost 11%, and aquaculture at over 13%. It was also recalled about effort to reduce ship emissions.

During conference it was discussion about economic activities areas where the Baltic Sea is at the forefront of cooperation and development (f.e. innovation clusters).

The next Research programme – Horizon 2020 – includes a focus on Blue Growth (the first Blue Growth calls for projects under Horizon 2020 early next year). The issue of innovation and technological development will be a major theme for next year’s Maritime Day in Bremen.

Conference presentations are online and available here: