PA 8 and DanuBioValnet’s Awareness Workshop for European Clusters in Zagreb
A More Active Approach of the Regional Level is Needed.
On 22nd of November PA 8 “Competitiveness of Enterprises, including Cluster Development” of the EU Strategy for Danube Region and the Awareness workshop of DTP DanuBioValNet project has been organized in Zagreb, in the framework of the EU Western Balkans Cluster Policy Learning and Matchmaking Event.
Priority Area 8 within the Danube Region Strategy, which is being coordinated by Germany (The Ministry for Economic Affairs, Labor and Housing Baden-Württemberg) and Croatia (The Ministry of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Crafts) was presented at this event as a relevant platform for regional and transnational cooperation. Additionally, as outlined, this ongoing networking within the Working Groups of PA8 leads to the preparation and the implementation of strategic transnational projects such as DanuBioValnet. The most important actions of this PA are focused on fostering the cooperation and exchange knowledge between SMEs, academia and the public sector, and on the improvement of the business support, especially in the rural areas, and clusters are proved to be of the great importance in those processes.
The project DanuBioValnet was presented within the panel on “Transnational Cluster Cooperation with the Western Balkan Countries” as a good example of successful and productive transnational cooperation in terms of the (re)establishing new value chains for the bio-based products. The aim was to present the four value chains that the project is dealing with (Phytopharmaceutical
industry, Eco-construction, Bio-based packaging, and Hemp industry) with an accent on the existing gaps and possibilities on how could other sectors get involved in order to jointly develop new methods, strategies and tools needed to connect the relevant stakeholders of the Danube Region, and to support the transformation from the fossil-based economy towards bio-based industry.
Until the end of the year the project consortium will develop a long-term, industry driven roadmap for the bio-based value-added networks, a Joint Bio-Based Industry Cluster Policy Strategy, which should be a main strategical document for the newly formed bio-based value chains and eco-innovations. In this way the further regional development will be supported, which represents one of the main pillars of the Danube Strategy. However, during the lively discussion, the participants pointed out a challenge linked exactly to the activities on the regional level, and the common conclusion is that more active approach on that level is needed, as well as strengthening of the framework for the future development of the clusters related to the bio-based value chains.
During this cluster event in Zagreb, more than 90 clusters from all Western Balkan countries, the European Union and two other COSME participating countries were presented. The event was organized by European Cluster Collaboration Platform and DG Grow, and co-hosted by the Croatian Ministry of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Crafts, which is also one of the DanuBioValNet project partners.