The First Balkan Forum on Regional Co-operation in Thessaloniki wrapped up three days of work on Feb. 9. The forum was a platform for connecting multiple stakeholders and young leaders and for generating ideas and strategies to address key regional challenges and opportunities. The event was sponsored by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund Foundation.
It was a closed-door forum attended by political leaders from Balkans, representatives of NGOs and entrepreneurs. The former Prime Minister of Greece, George Papandreou, gave a greeting speech.
The initiative said it was committed to fostering and assisting a growing network of individuals and organizations that will collaborate across borders and sectors to pursue shared regional development goals and to develop innovative solutions to shared regional problems.
The objectives were threefold: to discuss common agendas and capture initial thoughts about possible frameworks of cooperation. 2) to examine the current situation in specific issue areas, identifying existing capabilities, assets, and constraints, as well as measures that need to be undertaken to fill gaps and push forward on regional initiatives 3) to generate ideas for collaborative initiatives – including initiatives that start small but will have real impact.