The EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region (EUSAIR) is a macro-regional strategy adopted by the European Commission and endorsed by the European Council in 2014. The Strategy was jointly developed by the Commission, together with the Adriatic-Ionian Region countries and stakeholders, in order to address common challenges together. The Strategy aims at creating synergies and fostering coordination among all territories in the Adriatic-Ionian Region.

EUSAIR is not about funding, it is about closer cooperation and connectivity of the entire region!

The Strategy

The EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region, endorsed in October 2014 by the European Council, is the third EU macro-regional strategy after the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (2009) and the EU Strategy for the Danube Region (2011).

The EUSAIR covers eight countries: four EU Member States (Croatia, Greece, Italy, Slovenia) and four non-EU countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia).

Background and Objective

In December 2012, the European Council formally asked the European Commission to prepare an EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region (EUSAIR) before the end of 2014. The general objective of the EUSAIR is to promote economic and social prosperity and growth in the region by improving its attractiveness, competitiveness and connectivity. The Strategy should also play an important role in promoting the EU integration of Western Balkans.

“With four EU members and four non EU countries the strategy will also contribute to the further integration of the Western Balkans by offering the chance to work alongside neighbours on areas of common interest. This is Europe's third macro-regional strategy, and we have learnt the importance of political commitment and of participating countries focusing their efforts in the macro-regional approach. This will be key to this Strategy's success”, highlighted Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn.

EUSAIR has a limited focus on areas of mutual interest with high relevance for the Adriatic-Ionian countries. It is built on four thematic pillars:

1. Blue growth
2. Connecting the region (transport and energy networks)
3. Environmental quality
4. Sustainable tourism


  • 13-14 December 2012:  The European Council invites the European Commission to develop a strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian area.
  • January 2013-February 2014: Preparation of the Strategy by the European Commission along with the Adriatic-Ionian Regions countries / stakeholders, including a general public consultation and consultations with participating countries.
  • 6-7 February 2014: Stakeholder Conference in Athens, where the results of the consultations were presented.
  • 17 June 2014: European Commission adopts the Action Plan and Communication for the EUSAIR.
  • 24 October 2014: Endorsement of the EUSAIR by the European Council and launch of the implementation phase.
  • 18 November 2014: Launch Conference of the EUSAIR in Brussels.

For more information, see the Key Documents section.