Founded in 1971 in the territory of EUREGIO (Dutch-German border), the Association of European Border Regions (AEBR) promotes Cross-Border Cooperation (CBC) and its added value to the European integration process, mainly by lobby-work as well as organisation of and participation in European CBC and Regional policy events. AEBR is the only Europe-wide organisation representing border and cross-border (CB) regions as well as the oldest regional association, and has as its aims:
to make their particular problems, opportunities, tasks and projects intelligible
to represent their overall interests towards national and international parliaments, other authorities and institutions
to initiate, support and coordinate their co-operation throughout Europe
to exchange experiences and information to formulate and coordinate common interests from the various problems and opportunities of border regions, and to offer solutions.
By the end of 2014 the AEBR had about 90 members representing most European border areas. They are both regional governments from border areas or Euroregions and other cross-border structures, covering a European-wide cooperation network.
In May 2014 the AEBR created the Centre for Balkans aiming to support Euroregions and other cross-border structures in Balkan Region with following tasks:
Strengthen Balkan’s Euroregions and other cross-border structures for implementing programmes and projects, to apply for funds and to receive and to dispose of them;
Raise the capacity of Balkan’s Euroregions and other cross-border structures to organize events that deal with cross-border problems and to help to solve cross-border problems and to support special activities;
Act as platform for exchanges of experience and information with a view to identifying and coordinating common interests among the diverse range of cross-border problems and opportunities, and to propose possible solutions;
Improve public awareness of importance and value of Euroregions;
Detect special problems, opportunities, responsibilities and activities of Balkan’s Euroregions;
Initiate, support and coordinate cooperation between the Euroregions throughout Balkans;
Carry out the strategic plans and applied research on cross-border issues; and to
Establish and coordinate the AEBR Network of Young Leaders for Cross-border Cooperation.