Within the project "Cross-border business networking for sustainable growth," funded by the Program for Crossborder Cooperation between Republic of Bulgaria Republic of Macedonia, in Stip from 11-12.11.2011, the first contact meeting was held for building partner network for cooperation between institutions that provide support to the business sector in the border region. The main objective of the project is the improvement of the business climate in the region by promoting business cooperation between companies as well as new business development services and innovative way of promoting companies .
The main goal of the first contact meeting attended by representatives from the area of Blagoevgrad, Republic of Bulgaria, and representatives of institutions and organizations that offer support to businesses and municipalities in the east planning region of the Republic of Macedonia, was to meet stakeholders from the border region on one place for discussion of the needs, concepts and ideas for the future development of the partner network . Also at the meeting was defined model for joint planning of the development of cross-border partnership initiatives and activities . Among the conclusions from this first meeting, was the necessary networking of many economic entities and organizations and institutions for supporting the business in order to effectively exploit the full economic potential. Just at the moment the procedure of contacting institutions that offer business support in the border region is started, in order to inform them about the project " Cross-border business networking for sustainable growth " as well as the benefits they would receive from the establishment of a future partner network. All legal entities interested in membership in the partner network, are free to contact the Centre responsible for the development of the east planning region and submit their information.
This project is funded by the European Union, and is expected to be completed in May 2012. The opportunities offered by the project will entail new investment in the region, also there will be established partnership network for cooperation between institutions that provide support to the business sector and will be promoted measures and incentives for partnerships between small and medium-sized companies.