Meeting of organizations and institutions of the region and presentation of cross-border projects took place at Uzhhorod National University

Meeting of organizations and institutions of the region and presentation of cross-border projects took place at Uzhhorod National University

On Thursday, July 2, 2020, a round table with the particicipation of organizations and institutions of the region implementing cross-border projects under the cross-border cooperation programs "Poland - Belarus - Ukraine" and "Hungary - Slovakia - Romania - Ukraine" ENI 2014- 2020 was held in the meeting room of the Academic Council of UzhNU.

At the beginning of the event, the participants were greeted by the head of the Regional State Administration Oleksiy Petrov, the head of the Regional Council Mykhailo Rivis, the head of Uzhhorod City Council Bohdan Andriiv and the rector of Uzhhorod National University Volodymyr Smolanka.

 "Today we have met to discuss the important issues of cross-border cooperation, the role and place of the state in this process. I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the decentralization reform is nearing completion. Communities are becoming financially autonomous and the role and financial capabilities of the state are becoming limited in relation to important social projects. Therefore, there is a need to intensify work in the context of external borrowing, including through the area of cross-border cooperation, where Transcarpathia is developing rapidly. A project on the possibility of forming a state fund for cross-border cooperation is currently underway, and it will be considered as a tool for co-financing projects that will attract foreign investment in the main sectors of Transcarpathia, including transport, engineering and tourism. The development of cross-border cooperation should continue, and the state should promote this process as much as possible," stressed Oleksiy Petrov.

 "Transcarpathia is one of the most significant regions of Ukraine in the field of cross-border cooperation, given the number of our grant projects and attracting international aid. Our task is to make the most of this potential and attract funds and international investments in infrastructure development, this is the industry that should be a priority for us. As for what the regional council has already done in the field of cross-border cooperation, I would like to remind you that Transcarpathia is the only region that has a European territorial association, which is provided by the Statute of the European Union and registered outside Ukraine.  Such cooperation has already begun to pay dividends and provides us with potential future opportunities," said the head of the regional council Mykhailo Rivis.

"It is very gratifying that today we are discussing the important issues that affect the development of our region, which is an integral part of a large country. Of course, all participants already have got some experience in implementing cross-border cooperation programs, and Uzhhorod National University has such experience too. Today, I am going to tell in detail about the implementation of cross-border cooperation projects within the framework of ENI programs with the participation of Uzhhorod National University, as well as about the projects we are planning to implement. Regarding the international cooperation of Uzhhorod National University, we have a huge number of foreign partners. We are members of the Magna Charta Universitatum, which was signed a year and a half ago, and we have been members of the Danube Rectors’ Conference for three years, which unites 75 universities, including the universities of Austria, Germany and Italy. By the way, this year we were asked to hold the Danube Rectors’ Conference in Uzhhorod, which is undoubtedly a great honour, however due to the pandemic we will hold it next year. 5 years ago, we also founded the International Consortium of Universities, which includes 18 universities (9 foreign and 9 domestic ones), which allows us to quickly find partners for implementation of our research and educational projects. Over the past 6 years, we have implemented 25 projects. Now, there are 9 projects underway. They include "Horizon 2020", "Erasmus +", and "NEFCO". I would like to dwell on the projects "GeoSES", "GENOME", "Smart Energy", "NESICA", and "KRA`GAS" said the rector of Uzhhorod National University Volodymyr Smolanka.

34 cross-border cooperation projects under the ENI 2014-2020 programs, including 3 projects prepared by Uzhhorod National University, have been presented at the round-table. The projects addressed important and unique issues of ecological, cultural and historical significance, in particular: "Wooden Churches - Hidden Titans of Joint Tourist Development – Destinations "Carpathians", "Carpathian Academy of Wine Heritage", "Modernization of Road Connection between Presov Region and Transcarpathian Region", "Modern Cross-border Infrastructure - a Successful Carpathian Region", "We Destroy Borders wth the Help of Art" and others.