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INTERREG projects

Interreg Programme aim

Interreg  is a European territorial cooperation programme that is connected to the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). It is one of the many funding programmes in the European regional policy, such as the programmes of the Cohesion fund and the European Social Fund. Interreg aims to promote a harmonious economic, social and territorial development of the Union as a whole. The focus of the programme is on strengthening cross-border collaboration and it provides a framework for implementation of joint actions and policy exchanges between actors from different Member States. Many member states, regions and cities have made use of Interreg to fund climate change adaptation (CCA) planning and implementation. 


The structure

The first Interreg programme was launched in 1990 (Interreg I (1990-1993)), followed by Interreg II (1994-1999), Interreg III (2000-2006) Interreg IV (2007-2013) and Interreg V (2014-2020). The 2021-2027 Programme (Interreg VI) is structured as follows:

  1. Interreg A – Cross-Border: to enhance cross-border cooperation between NUTS III regions from at least two different Member States lying directly on the borders or adjacent to them. Interreg A can be used to invest in innovation, health care, education, employment and labour mobility. Risk prevention and emergency response as part of climate adaptation can be financed by this programme.
  2. Interreg B - Transnational: to enhance transnational cooperation between regions from several countries by developing a joint approach to tackle common issues like in the fields of innovation, environment, accessibility, telecommunication, urban development. For the programming period 2021-2027, 14 transnational cooperation programmes will continue to support cooperation activities at larger scale in Europe and beyond. For more information on how climate change is embedded in transnational Interreg programmes, click here.
  3. Interreg C - Networking: to enhance interregional cooperation to build up networks for developing good practice and facilitating the exchange and transfer of experience by successful regions. For the programming period 2021-2027, Interreg C covers 3 interregional cooperation programmes (Interreg EUROPE, INTERACT and ESPON) sharing the objective to increase the capacity of policy-makers to develop and implement better regional policies.
  4. Interreg D – Outermost regions: the objective of the new strand D, specifically established for the outermost regions, is to allow them to cooperate with their neighbouring countries and territories in the most efficient and simple way. Strand D concerns 4 geographical areas: Amazonia, Caribbean, Middle Atlantic/Gulf of Guinea (MAC), Indian Ocean, Mozambique Channel. For more information about how climate change is embedded in Interreg programmes for outermost region, click here.


Moreover, in 2021-2027. the cross-border cooperation (CBC) between EU Member States and Neighbourhood is governed by the EU Cohesion policy and the programmes are fully part of the Interreg Programme, known as “Interreg NEXT”. The cooperation with candidate countries occurs through Interreg IPA (Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance) organised in 14 programmes covering cooperation in 212 regions.

For an up-to-date overview of the Interreg projects, check the Interreg website or visit the Keep database which includes search functions for transnational regions, cross border and interregional projects and for outermost regions.


Budget, objectives and priorities for the Interreg 2021-2027

Interreg VI has a budget of about EUR 10 billion invested in over 100 cooperation programmes across the borders, in and outside the EU. A share of about 6.7 billion EUR is allocated to the 73 cross-border cooperation programmes (strand A), 2.3 billion EUR to the 14 transnational cooperation programmes (strand B), 500 million EUR to the Interregional cooperation programmes (strand C) and 300 million EUR for the outermost regions (strand D).

The budget should contribute to the five Policy Objectives (PO) of the EU’s cohesion policy and to additional two Interreg Specific Objectives (SO):

  • A more competitive and smarter Europe (PO1)
  • A greener, low-carbon transitioning towards a net zero carbon economy and resilient Europe (PO2)
  • A more connected Europe (PO3)
  • A more social and inclusive Europe (PO4)
  • A Europe closer to citizens (PO5)
  • A better Cooperation governance (ISO1)
  • A safer and more secure Europe (ISO2)

Climate change adaptation is expected to be particularly addressed by projects funded under PO2. Enabling conditions for adaptation are also expected from PO4 and ISO1.

INTERREG projects on Climate-ADAPT

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