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Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group (MSP WG)
Joint Planning of the Common Sea - HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group

The 7th conference of Baltic Sea Region ministers responsible for spatial planning and development held in Vilnius on 16 October 2009 in its Declaration stated that a common Baltic approach for Maritime Spatial Planning should be discussed and tools and methods of such planning developed. Enhanced co-operation is necessary in the field of capacity building actions to ensure exchange of experience, to promote education and to increase competence in Maritime Spatial Planning. The ministers underlined that a close co-operation with HELCOM with regard to environmental aspects and with other relevant actors is essential.

The HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan committed the HELCOM Contracting Parties to jointly develop by 2010 as well as test, apply and evaluate by 2012, in cooperation with other relevant international bodies, broad-scale, cross-sectoral MSP principles based on the ecosystem approach that reflect the specific conditions and needs in the Baltic Sea Region.

The 51st VASAB CSPD/BSR meeting on 21-22 January 2010 decided to re-establish the VASAB MSP Working Group. The first meeting of the Working Group took place on 16-17 March 2010 in Riga; it suggested close cooperation with HELCOM.

The HELCOM Ministerial Meeting on 20 May 2010 in Moscow agreed to establish a joint co-chaired HELCOM-VASAB MSP Working Group.
The first meeting of the joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP WG took place on 21-22 October 2010 in Helsinki.

The Working Group ensures cooperation among the Baltic Sea Region countries for coherent regional MSP processes in the Baltic Sea. Meetings of the joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP Working Group take place up to three times a year. The Working Group is co-chaired by HELCOM and VASAB-nominated co-chairs and deputy co-chairs. The outcomes of the meetings can be found here.
The HELCOM-VASAB MSP Working Group follows and examines as well as makes use of the outcomes and findings of regional project activities relevant to MSP, such as PartiSEApate, BaltSeaPlan and Plan Bothnia.

Mandate for the joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP WG

The Mandate for the joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP WG, 2010-2013 is adopted by VASAB CSPD/BSR and HELCOM HOD, setting out the overall aims of the Working Group, the anticipated tasks as well as organizational rules.

The Mandate of the Working Group is prolonged until 31 December 2016. A revised Mandate was approved by the 62nd VASAB CSPD/BSR meeting and by the 41st Meeting of the HELCOM HOD.

Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning principles

The Joint VASAB-HELCOM Maritime Spatial Planning principles were adopted by VASAB CSPD/BSR and HELCOM HOD in December 2010.

AGREED MARITIME SPATIAL PLANNING GUIDELINES

11th Meeting of the Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group held in Riga on 30 September-1 October 2015 agreed on Guidelines for the implementation of ecosystem - based approach in Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in the Baltic Sea area.

The 12th Meeting of the Joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP Working Group held in Gdansk on 24-25 February 2016 approved Guidelines on transboundary consultations, public participation and co-operation.

Regional Baltic Maritime Spatial Planning Roadmap

The Regional Baltic Maritime Spatial Planning Roadmap 2013-2020 was created to fulfill the goal of drawing up and applying maritime spatial plans throughout the Baltic Sea region by 2020 which are coherent accross borders and apply the ecosystem approach. It includes necessary steps in seven fields in order to achieve the goal as well as timeline. The Roadmap was drafted by the MSP WG and adopted by the HELCOM Ministerial Meeting on 3 October 2013 and agreed by the 62nd VASAB CSPD/BSR meeting.

Work Plan for the joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP WG

The Work Plan for 2010 – 2013 for the Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group was approved at the Second Meeting of the Joint HELCOM-VASAB MSP WG.

The Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group Work Plan for 2014-2016 was adopted by HELCOM 35-2014 and the 66th VASAB CSPD/BSR Meeting.

The Joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group Work Plan for 2017-2019 has been agreed by the 74th VASAB CSPD/BSR and HELCOM 38-2017.

EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region

The EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region has attributed VASAB and HELCOM a prominent role in promoting MSP in the region together with other stakeholders according to the Horizontal Action "Spatial Planning - Encouraging the use of Maritime and Land-based Spatial Planning in all Member States around the Baltic Sea and develop a common approach for cross-border cooperation". More information about the activities of the Horizontal Action is available here.

PROJECTS

VASAB has initiated, supported and has been represented in a number of projects that facilitate implementation of the VASAB tasks:

 

 

PanBalticScope logo

Pan Baltic Scope

hasps 2 1 20160804 1674304183

HASPS 2 - Horizontal Action "Spatial Planning" Support 2

 

NSB CoRe logo rgb

NSB CoRe - North Sea Baltic Connector of Regions

BalticLines logo NoText


Baltic LINes
- Coherent Linear Infrastructures in Baltic Maritime Spatial Plans

BalticSCOPE logo web large

 

Baltic SCOPE - Towards coherence and cross-border solutions in Maritime Spatial Planning

hasps 1 20150917 1799585583


HASPS
- Horizontal Action "Spatial Planning" Support

 

HASPATIAL logotype cmyk small EUSBSR TA-HAL - Technical Assistance to the EUSBSR Horizontal Action „Spatial Planning"
PartiSEApate - Multi-level Governance in MSP (Maritime Spatial Planning) throughout the Baltic Sea Region
BSR-TeMo - Territorial Monitoring for the Baltic Sea Region

Plan Bothnia - EU DG MARE Preparatory Action on Maritime Spatial Planning in the Baltic Sea

BaltSeaPlan
East West Window
PlanCoast
BALANCE – Baltic Sea Management – Nature Conservation and Sustainable Development of the Ecosystem through Spatial Planning
baltcoast logo BaltCoast – Recommendations on the role of spatial planning in Integrated Coastal Zone Management
matros

MATROS – Maritime Transportation System in the Baltic Sea Region from a Spatial Development Perspective

PartiSEApate
Baltic Sea Region Programme 2007–2013 project Multi-level Governance in MSP (Maritime Spatial Planning) throughout the Baltic Sea Region

partiseapate basicProject's lifetime: Jun 2012 - Sep 2014

Budget: € 1 043 015

The overall objective of the Project: to initiate cross-border, cross-sectorial and multi-level governance in Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) throughout the Baltic Sea Region.

The ambition of the PartiSEApate project is to develop a pan-Baltic approach to the topics whose spatial dimension goes over the national borders (i.e. nature protection areas, grid connections, shipping lanes). Partners will develop a concept for a MSP institutional framework and governance model (incl. transnational consultation, MSP data exchange network), which shall provide input to policy decisions taken at the VASAB ministerial conference.
The VASAB Compendium on MSP systems in BSR countries will be updated and bodies responsible for drafting MSP throughout the region will test and develop instruments and models how multi-level and transnational governance mechanisms can be realised in MSP.

The project will have three pilot case areas:
Pomeranian Bight (SE, DE, PL),
Lithuanian Sea (LT, LV, SE, RU)
Middle Bank (SE, PL).

In addition partners will engage national & transnational bodies, other PACs & flagships, sectors & researchers in a dialogue on a pan-Baltic level. Through a sequence of single-topic workshops (i.e. shipping, wind energy, aquaculture, cultural heritage, environment, climate change, data & research) stakeholders will better understand what MSP means to them and the transnational nature of their topic. In follow up cross-sectoral workshops synergies and conflicts will be identified and proposals for future MSP governance processes at pan-Baltic level will be developed.

Participants of the Project

Maritime Institute Gdansk (Lead partner)
Maritime Office in Gdynia
VASAB Secretariat
Baltic Environmental Forum Latvia
Latvian Institute of Aquatic Ecology
Klaipėda University Coastal Research and Planning Institute
Region Skåne
Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management
Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency
Maritime Office Szczecin

Main outputs of the project

• Recommendations on transnational minimum requirements for MSP
• Update of Compendium on MSP structures around BSR
• Concept for a transnational institutional and governance model on transnational coordination, agreements and data exchanges in MSP
• Handbook on multilevel/ transnational MSP consultation process
• Summary report on various sector perspectives, their expectations towards MSP and targets&priorities for future development on pan-Baltic scale
Overview of the Maritime Spatial Planning Situation in the Countries of the Baltic Sea Region 2013 (country fiches)

Outputs

The final result is a MSP plan document “Planning the Bothnian Sea” which was created as a collective effort by six partners and numerous participants from regional and national authorities in Sweden and Finland.

 

VASAB as a partner of PLAN BOTHNIA Project hired two experts to provide services for study on “Region-wide recommendations on minimum requirements for MSP systems”:

  1. Expert for development of minimum requirements for maritime spatial planning systems and
  2. Expert for identification of maritime spatial planning best practices in the Baltic Sea region and other European Union maritime regions.

Final reports are available here:


icon Report Necessary common minimum requirements for Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in the Baltic Sea

icon Report Identification of maritime spatial planning best practices in the Baltic Sea Region and other European Union maritime regions

PLAN BOTHNIA
EU DG MARE Preparatory Action on Maritime Spatial Planning in the Baltic Sea

Plan BothniaProject's lifetime: December 2010 - June 2012
Budget: € 500 000

The PLAN BOTHNIA project has tested transboundary Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in the Baltic Sea. The project used the Bothnian Sea area between Sweden and Finland as a case study of Baltic transboundary MSP. The project was a Baltic Sea MSP "preparatory action" funded by EU Commission DG MARE under the EU Integrated Maritime Policy.

The final result is a MSP plan document "Planning the Bothnian Sea" which was created as a collective effort by six partners and numerous participants from regional and national authorities in Sweden and Finland. The plan publication includes peer reviews of five international experts on MSP.

The Lead Partner of the project was Baltic Sea Helsinki Commission (HELCOM) Secretariat. VASAB Secretariat was a project partner responsible for study on "Region-wide recommendations on minimum requirements for MSP systems, a stakeholder meeting and the final conference.


More information about PLAN BOTHNIA project can be found at project webpage.

BSR-TeMo - Territorial Monitoring for the Baltic Sea Region
ESPON 2013 Programme project

Project's lifetime: February 2012 – January 2014
Budget: € 340 000

BSR-TeMo promotes territorial development and cohesion in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) by developing an indicator based monitoring system. The monitoring system will measure the progress in achieving economic, social and territorial cohesion in the BSR by using indicators at different scales. This will contribute to increased knowledge and understanding of territorial cohesion processes in the BSR. Geographically the whole of the BSR, EU as well as none EU-member States, is covered.

The BSR can become a practical demonstration area for the territorial dimension of the EU Cohesion Policy and cooperation with the neighbouring countries in spatial and regional development. The EU Strategy for the BSR is foreseen to promote a stronger transnational cooperation between various actors in dealing with important issues, which transcend the administrative borders. Among them are the issues of environment, prosperity, attractiveness and accessibility, as well as safety and security challenges. The Strategy takes notice of the development opportunities related to an inflow of EU Structural Funds to the countries and regions around the Baltic Sea, and calls for harmonization of actions across the borders in order to minimize overlaps and contradictory activities.

The remains of the former political divide of Europe are still strongly reflected in the disparities between the countries in the BSR. The ministers responsible for spatial planning and development in the Baltic Sea Region at the VASAB Ministerial Conference in Vilnius 2009 declared the interest to develop the Region into a model case of concrete co-operation in spatially related cross-border and transnational spatial planning and development tasks towards territorial cohesion. Furthermore they asked for monitoring and periodical reporting of the territorial development of the BSR.

VASAB Committee on Spatial Planning and Development in the Baltic Sea Region (CSPD/BSR) is a Steering Committee for the project representing interests of the project stakeholders. Four Steering Committee meetings have taken place: 19-20 March 2012 in Rostock, 20-21 June 2012 in Potsdam, 24 October 2012 in St.Petersburg, 21-22 January 2013 in Oslo.

Here you can see the synthesis of the project results in publication "Baltic Sea Region - Territorial Monitoring", printed in March 2014 by VASAB:

icon Baltic Sea Region - Territorial Monitoring

icon Регион Балтийского моря – территориальный мониторинг

 

More information about BSR-TeMo project can be found at the ESPON 2013 Programme webpage.

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