The seventh workshop within the Legal Accessibility project was held in Szeged, at the Csongrád County Government Offices (1 Rákóczi square), to which stakeholders active in cross-border cooperation in the Romanian-Hungarian border region were invited, especially from the southern part of the border section. In the form of a round table discussion, two associates of CESCI were collecting information on legal and/or practical obstacles local actors are facing during their activities concerning the other side of the border, as well as good practices useful for bridging these problems.
The meeting was held on the 11th of February 2016 and attended by 7 participants in the following sectors and fields:
- economic development: Csongrád County Chambers for Industry and Commerce
- law enforcement: Csongrád County Directorate for Disaster Management
- government sector: Csongrád County Government Offices
- local government sector: Csongrád County Municipality Offices
- cross-border cooperation, European grouping for territorial cooperation: DKMT Euroregion, Banat-Triplex Confinium EGTC
Since their accession to the EU, border crossing between Romania and Hungary has become significantly easier. Yet, border crossing infrastructure is still lagging behind (crossing points are scarce), as is cross-border public transport. The functionality of institutionalised cross-border cooperation is hindered by many an administrative obstacle, primarily on the Romanian side. Cross-border state financed health care has not evolved due to the lack of cooperation between health insurance companies, even though the DKMT EGTC did have an initiative on the matter (the regional health insurance card). Another issue is that as a result of differences in health care quality in the two countries, Romanian patients often call on premium services on the Hungarian side of the border (e.g. separate room for child birth), which causes problems for Hungarian patients.
Cross-border entrepreneurship activity is not common, due to actors’ lack of information, even though there have been good practices aimed at resolving this issue. There is exemplary, well-organised cooperation among regional disaster management bodies, however – mainly because of the problematic physical connections –, relations between universities are missing out on certain opportunities.
The representative of the EGTC reported on anomalies related to bank account management on the Romanian side, and uncommon legal labour-mobility was also mentioned.