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Clusters development and B2B internationalization in Estonian -Russian transborder regions (EstRuClusterDevelopment)

Leningrad oblast and Ida-Virumaa county are industrial areas with long industrial traditions. In new economic environment and globalisation there is a need to exploit new challenges and opportunities through joint approaches. The project objective is two fold: to raise awareness, identify and prepare development of trans-border economic clusters in the North-West Russia and North-East Estonia,and to give potential cluster SMEs practical opportunities in developing crossborder contacts,open new markets and create innovative networks. The project also aims to transfer the best innovative European practice in cluster development.Through cluster wise B2B matchmaking project will trigger more active international business cooperation on EU-Russian border. The Lead project partner is Kohtla-Järve Town Government (Estonia) who is supported by a good team of commited partners from Russia and Estonia: Committee for External Relations of St.Petersburg, Slantsy and Kingisepp region municipalities, Ivangorod Centre for Sustainable development (Russia),and Sillamae City Government and Narva Region Entrepreneurs Association (Estonia).Target groups are: regional SMEs, Local authorities, Labour market, Business Support organisations and newtworks.The main activities are: Identification of potential transborder clusters: statistical survey, documentary survey, stakeholders analysis, interviews with opinion leaders, businesses and stakeholders, mapping of prospective sector clusters for further development, expert panel meetings, awareness raising seminars and focus groups,cluster strategy development, SMEs capacity and network building,cluster wise B2B events and training; development of methodological and promotional materials;study visit and conferences.Expected outputs: 2 surveys made,cluster strategy and methodology developed; 4 cross border clusters with the biggest potential dentified,promotional materials published, international Cluster Conference with 80 participants held, four B2B cluster wise events numbering 150 SMEs acompanied with training in clusters and networking delivered, information on project results disseminated;capacities of project partners and local actors increased.Expected results: 4 cross-border cluster neworks,at least 10%increase of cluster participation rate after 2 years,strategic base for clusters set-up and management, increased volume of subcontracting and foreign trade;improved knowledge on cluster phenomenon by target group and wider public of at least 600000 people and businesses;enhanced cooperation and PPP, 2 new follow-up projects agreed. Project impact:Improved image of cross-border regions as attractive location for investments and living;growth in insourcing and outsourcing; improved employment,economy growth and diversity, balanced economical development, increased regional GDP and FDI, economy and budget revenues growth.



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