Baltic Marine Environment
Protection Commission

Policy Area Spatial Planning

EU Strategy for Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR)

The European Union Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) is a macro-regional strategy, which aims at reinforcing cooperation within the region and promoting a balanced development in the area. The EUSBSR is divided into three objectives which represent the three key challenges of the Strategy: saving the sea, connecting the region and increasing prosperity. The objectives guide an array of Policy Areas which are specific areas for macro-regional cooperation. The Policy Areas are implemented by regional stakeholders through detailed actions and flagship projects.

Policy Area Spatial Planning

With its Policy Area “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” (PA Spatial Planning), the EUSBSR has attributed HELCOM and Vision and Strategies around the Baltic Sea (VASAB) a prominent role in promoting maritime spatial planning (MSP) in the Baltic Sea region

PA Spatial Planning consists of two thematic parts, namely maritime spatial planning (MSP) and land-based spatial planning. HELCOM and VASAB are the joint Policy Area coordinators on MSP. The joint HELCOM-VASAB Maritime Spatial Planning Working Group acts as the Steering Committee for the HA Spatial Planning.

The target of PA Spatial Planning is to draw up and apply maritime spatial plans throughout the Baltic Sea Region by 2020/2021 which are coherent across borders and apply the ecosystem approach.

The Regional Baltic MSP Roadmap 2013-2020 has guided these efforts. The roadmap is currently being updated to cover the period 2021-2030.

A brochure on the predecessor of PA Spatial Planning, Horizontal Action Spatial Planning, can be downloaded here.