WHAT is the B7?
The B7 is a co-operation of the 7 largest islands in the Baltic Sea from 5 different countries. The B7 believes that as a co-operation they can influence developments for their common good. At the time of starting, PARTNERS of the B7 co-operation were Bornholm (Denmark), Gotland (Sweden), Hiiumaa (Estonia), Rügen (Germany), Saaremaa (Estonia), Åland (autonomous region of Finland), and Öland (Sweden). Since 2014 co-operations will continues with 5 islands (without Bornholm and Öland).
BENEFITS and OPPORTUNITIES of the B7 CO-OPERATION:
- An organization that can lobby to promote island issues at the national and international level
- A network to exchange experiences and ideas
- An union that works at the political, public official and grass roots levels
- A co-operation to develop interregional programmes and projects
- The framework for an extensive network of contacts
The PRINCIPLES of MEMBERSHIP are:
- The B7 co-operation is a partnership of equals
- Each member is a Baltic Sea island
- Each island contributes to the co-operation based on population size
FACTS ABOUT B7
- Co-operation started in 1989
- Focuses on the development of islands
- Develops and implements large and small projects, events, conferences, exchanges
- Operations managed by an Annual Conference, rotating Chairmanship and Secretariat
- Works through ad hoc and permanent workgroups such as People to People, Environment and Sustainability, Tourism co-operation etc.
- Participates in developing strategies and solutions for tackling key island issues such as transport, communication, marine environment, energy
- Started with one island being a member of the EU. Now all islands are EU members
- The population of B7 islands is about 250 thousand inhabitants
The B7 islands offer an attractive living environment with a sustainable development. Connecting their people, professionals and businesses across borders, the B7 cooperation has contributed to put the islands more in control of their own destiny. Through exchange of experience, lobby and projects B7 cooperation has helped make the islands’ more resilient and their population richer, smarter and happier.