Tuesday, June 25, 2024

New solutions to improve citizens’ lives in Europe’s cross-border regions

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The Commission has put forward solutions to ensure citizens who live in border regions in the European Union can access the services that they need in their daily lives. 150 million European citizens live in these regions. They often face obstacles to access transport, healthcare services, education, as well as infrastructure projects. Navigating between different legal and administrative systems can be complex, costly, and confusing.

For example, a citizen can have trouble accessing critical emergency services because their closest emergency service or hospital may be across a border. They can face a lack of information about their rights, different health insurance rules or different technical requirements for emergency vehicles. As a result, they may not reach a hospital or request an ambulance on time.

Under the new proposal, EU countries will have to set up Cross-Border Coordination Points. When someone reports a cross-border issue, this new service will put them in touch with the relevant national authorities. Together, they can work on finding a practical solution. EU countries have the final say on which solutions are put in place. The Commission will also create a network of these Coordination Points to share best practices.

Removing 20% of the current legal and administrative hurdles would boost GDP by 2% and create over one million jobs in Europe’s cross-border regions, according to a 2017 study.

For more information

Cross-border cooperation in the EU

Press release: Commission proposal to strengthen the Single Market by tackling legal and administrative obstacles in Europe’s cross-border regions

Report: effects of legal and administrative obstacles in land border regions

Survey of citizens in cross-border regions

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