We invite you to read the newest IEŚ Policy Papers 11/2021 – Evolution of the Council of the Baltic Sea States: three decades of regional cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region (1991-2021). Author: dr Damian Szacawa.
The Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) was established in March 1992 to ensure a regional forum for political dialogue among states from both sides of the former Iron Curtain. During almost three decades, the CBSS has evolved from a loose intergovernmental cooperation in 1992, to a regional intergovernmental organisation with a well-developed institutional structure by the end of 2021. Five stages in the evolution of the CBSS have been identified during which the organizational structure and the scope of activities undertaken were adapted to the change in the international environment.
After the last reform in 2020, the CBSS is still an important forum for regional political dialogue based on a more flexible and pragmatic formula. The CBSS is well prepared to participate in a regional governance model, as it is a highly institutionalised regional intergovernmental organisation that has acquired outstanding expertise in areas such as civil security and sustainable development, and is responsible also for developing bottom-up initiatives involving private actors around the Baltic Sea.