Gateway between East and West


Regional Council of Päijät-Häme implements its programme document 2007-2010 for international activities. The key areas of international affairs are:

1. Strengthening clusters of business life and their competitiveness in the international field

2. Internationalization of educational actors and organisations

3. International lobbying of the region

4. Internationalization of municipalities and towns

Päijät-Häme is an European region and has manifold and large networks in the international arenas. Päijät-Häme is a relevant part of the business centre of the Baltic Sea area and belongs to the fast developing Northern European economic area. Päijät-Häme owns an excellent accessibility which combines and collects various stakeholders of different sectors to a logistics centre of Päijät-Häme.
Päijät-Häme region supports and implements the Lisbon goals in own expertise areas in co-operation with other Southern Finnish regions. Goals of Lisbon strategy promote e.g. economic growth, increased employment, social development and better educational systems. Environmental and nature values are also a relevant approach in the Lisbon strategy. Environmental values are very important for the region. Business and research has strongly invested in the environmental technologies in Päijät-Häme.
Stakeholders of the Päijät-Häme region have offices in Brussels, St. Petersburg and Shanghai as well as numerous bilateral co-operation agreements with other European regions. The business sector of Päijät-Häme region acts globally. Päijät-Häme is the Northern part of the larger Helsinki Metropolitan region as defined by the OECD. Päijät-Häme region actively develops contacts with the neighbouring St. Petersburg region and the regions of the Baltic States especially through the business life and educational sector. The fast growing economies of the Baltic States are for the stakeholders of Päijät-Häme region in the international framework the closest arena of the European common market.
Export industry and logistic enterprises have an excellent business environment in Päijät-Häme region. There are fast motorway and railway connections (1 hour) to the capital region, main port in Vuosaari/Helsinki and international airport Helsinki-Vantaa. In the near future the fast railway connection to St. Petersburg will be opened. Päijät-Häme is a true gateway region between East and West. Päijät-Häme and its regional capital – City of Lahti – is one of the world´s leading winter sports centres. Lahti is also strong on its cultural chracteristics and the best Concert Hall of the whole Northern Europe – Sibelius Hall -is located here.


The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions brings together around 160 Regions. Being located along Europe’s shoreline brings both advantages and specific difficulties, so some 160 Regions have come together to form the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe (CPMR). They are from 28 countries and represent almost 200 million people. They work together to ensure that EU institutions and national governments take account of their common interests, and cooperate on practical projects in order to enhance their assets.

Regional Council of Päijät-Häme is a member in the CPMR and its Baltic Sea Commission since 2002. The membership application was adopted in the CPMR General Assembly in Ioannina, Greece on 18-20 September 2002. The Regional Council of Päijät-Häme hosted the Secretariat of the CPMR Baltic Sea Commission in years 2003-2006. The Executive Secretary of the CPMR Baltic Sea Commission was Mr Marko Mälly.


It is very important for municipalities and towns to find thematic and concrete co-operation forms between the municipal stakeholders through bilateral or multilateral co-operation. Co-operation with international partners is networking where the good knowledge and use of networks is all the time more and more important. Municipalities and towns of Päijät-Häme Region have made international co-operation with their partners for decades. Municipalities of Päijät-Häme have 35 twinning agreements all around in Europe, and the oldest twinning agreements are signed already in 1930´s. Additionally the Regional Council of Päijät-Häme has several co-operation agreements with other European regions.

For more information for the financing possibilities of the twinning activities please visit the website of the Europe for Citizens Programme 2007-2013.


Please do not hesitate to contact for further information about the international affairs of the Päijät-Häme Regional Council

Senior Advisor/International Affairs
Regional Council of Päijät-Häme

PL 50, Hämeenkatu 9, 15111 Lahti, FINLAND
Tel. +358 3 8719 438
Gsm +358 44 3719 438
Fax. +358 3 8719 411
E-mail: marko.mally(a)

EU Programmes for International Co-operation

Region of Päijät-Häme participates as an adjoined area the Central Baltic INTERREG A programme and the South-East Finland – Russia ENPI CBC programme as well as with the full status the INTERREG programmes of Baltic Sea (INTERRREG B) and the European wide programme (INTERREG C). Region of Päijät-Häme has also actively used the funding possibilities offered by the Europe for Citizens Programme 2007-2013.


”EU senior citizens as active users of gerontechnology innovations” initiated by the Regional Council of Päijät-Häme is a continuation to the project ”Care for the elderly in the European Union” where two seminars were organised in May 2008 in Pecs, Hungary and in September 2008 in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. The main objective of the earlier project has been to create a forum for the experts of various member states of the EU who deal with elderly care to exchange experiences about EU social policies as local experiences, to present their activities as well as to reveal the possibilities of a future co-operation. Participating experts found it very important to continue the well started co-operation and will deepen the expertise especially about gerontechnological innovations for active senior citizens in preventive care of dementia.

In the new project the earlier partner structure is used with the possibly widest range of regional members of the European Union in the planned activity of representatives of member states that founded the EU, member states that joined the EU in 2004 as well as member states that joined the EU in 2007.

As the earlier project did represent a more general approach to the Elderly Care in the European Union for establishing a strong partnership, in the new project experts of the elderly care from various European regions will deepen and share their knowledge especially about the use of gerontechnological solutions especially in the preventive care of dementia. Dementia is a wide European challenge when European population is ageing. One aspect of the problem is the adequate quality of the care for the elderly who are more and more represented in our societies. The improvement of the level of elder care can contribute to the increase of their equal opportunities in the society because it offers them the possibility of an active and liveable life. Experiences made in Nordic countries and Germany may serve as a model and guidance for the quality improvement of the elderly care in the regions of new member states of the EU and also strengthen the European network of expertise.