Study on Blue Growth, Maritime Policy and the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region

The study aims to identify the potential for Blue Growth in each of the EU Member States (MS) of the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) and at sea basin level. It also assesses the contribution and effectiveness of maritime actions as set out in the current EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) in implementing the EU Integrated Maritime Policy (EU IMP) in general and the Blue Growth potential identified in particular. 

The methodology of analysis applied throughout the study follows the approach that was developed for all blue growth studies currently undertaken on behalf of DG Mare for all European sea basins. For this purpose seven maritime functions have been defined, each of them composed of several maritime economic activities (MEA), for a total of 29 MEAs. 

Data for each of the BSR EU Member States was drawn from Eurostat for the years 2009-2010 in order to perform a quantitative analysis of the size and recent growth of the MEAs. The qualitative assessment is based on six defined Blue Growth indicators, i.e. innovativeness, competitiveness, employment, policy relevance, spill-over effects and sustainability. For the analysis at sea-basin level this data was aggregated to show similarities and differences between the BSR countries and identify potential areas for sea basin cooperation. 

Study on Blue Growth, Maritime Policy and the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region The study showed that there was a strong maritime dimension in the EUSBSR. About 32% of all actions have a direct maritime aspect and 47% of all flagship projects are currently highly or partly maritime. A survey among stakeholders of the EUSBSR lead to the identification of the following four key success factors to further strengthen Blue Growth issues under the current EUSBSR Governance. The first was to raise awareness of what blue growth actually means by building on the range of already existing prominent projects as well as potentially currently still «hidden» success stories. The second was to improve EUSBSR formulations. The third was to combine various funding lines, and the last was to create a dedicated Blue Growth support facility for EUSBSR Coordinators and/or flagship project leaders. 

Full report:Study on Blue Growth, Maritime Policy and the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region

By Martine Farstad