EGTC EFXINI POLI IN BRUSSELS - OPEN DAYS 2014

The interregional cooperation projects carried out by EGTC EFXINI POLI - Network of European Cities for Sustainable Development, were presented by the General Director, Dr. Nikos Krimnianiotis, in the workshop organized by CoR during the OPEN DAYS 2014 in Brussels. The workshop’s title was “The EGTC in the long haul, Interreg and other Opportunities”. Its goal had been the discussion of interregional cooperation among EGTCs of Europe and the cooperation opportunities offered by the upcoming programme INTERREG EUROPE. Dr Nikos Krimnianiotis, started his speech with a brief presentation of the course of the EGTC EFXINI POLI from its foundation in 1995 as Network Greek Municipalities and the conversion of an EGTC in 2012, until today.

Later, he referred to several Interregional projects that EGTC EFXINI POLI takes part in, on behalf of its members, either as a member of a partnership or as a Lead Partner. Three projects were presented, one in the social sector and two in Environmental Management. Dr Nikos Krimnianiotis closed his presentation referring to a proposal for cooperation on the thematic topic of "Innovation in Employment".
Precisely, the three territorial cooperation projects presented and the project idea for Innovative Employment are briefly presented, below: 
 
1.SOLIDARCITY
The role and involvement of Local Authorities to the Employment rate increase (recently completed). 
It had been a project financed through INTERREG IVC programme with partners from Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, United Kingdom and Finland. Pilot actions were implemented in Greece, Bulgaria and Italy and two of the outputs available are the Guide for creation of Time Banks and “SolidarCity Houses” Guide.
 
2. ZEROWASTE PRO Solid Waste Management 
It is a project financed through MED 2007-2013 CAPITALISATION programme with partners from Greece, Italy, Slovenia, Spain, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, France and Malta and key deliverables:
  • Green Solutions Guide for waste management 
  • Training guide for executives of Local Government in green solutions for waste management. 
  • Manual for online tool that helps in measuring the CO2 footprint of the Municipalities and Regions 
  • White Paper for SMEs and Industrial Areas in relation to the production and management of their waste
3.Regions for Recycling - R4R, Solid Waste Management 
It is a project financed through INTERREG IVC programme, with partners from Greece, Belgium, France, Portugal, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania, Spain, Estonia, Austria, Ireland, and Denmark with the main deliverable: "Development of a methodology by which each region will evaluate the performance of recycling and tool that will help to compare their recycling performances at European Level".
 
4.INNOVATION IN EMPLOYMENT 
The idea “Innovation in Employment” has a direct connection with the Guaranteed Employment after Vocational Training. Having a huge experience in the field of vocational training and deep knowledge of the ESF resources use, we know in practice that employment after training is minimal to zero. The EGTC EFXINI POLI, trying to find a way out, drawing on years of experience in the implementation of a variety of innovative employment projects under the Community Initiatives and having as a basic rule to use only existing resources (physical and financial), developed, together with its members, a study-proposal regarding Ten-year Guaranteed Employment in the primary and secondary sectors of the Economy. The idea is based on the cultivation of the abandoned public land with Herbs or Medicinal plants following specific methods of organizing work. 
The proposal of Dr Nikos Krimnianiotis to the participants had been the cooperation of EGTCs of Southern Europe with EGTCs of Northern Europe in order to implement a pilot project, areas of the South will produce medical herbs since they have the appropriate climatological conditions while the areas of Northern Europe, will work on the Industrial processing of essential oils (A/F) to absorb the quantity of the South.
The idea is believed to be sustainable and has been positively assessed in advance by experts. 
The method of BUSINESS INCUBATORS will be applied. The INNOVATION on EMPLOYMENT, lies upon the development of an incubator system which will need only an initial funding and no additional funding, while at the same time new beneficiaries will be able to be integrated  every one or two years. The result in 10 years will be:  
a) doubling of  the number of employees 
b) a GUARANTEED EMPLOYMENT for at least 10 years
President Van Staa asked to discuss the proposal at a special meeting of the EGTC Platform in January 2015 devoted exclusively to the topic of EGTC and Employment. 

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