Santander and Bilbao: new alliances of Atlantic Cities

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Last May 21 Santander and Bilbao signed an agreement for cultural, tourist and economic cooperation. Reflecting the willingness of the mayors to unite and establish a steady relationship, this agreement reflects the complementarity between these two cities in areas such as culture and tourism. Moreover, Serna and Azkuna have highlighted the importance of involving stakeholders by promoting exchanges and interactions between companies in order to strengthen and boost the cooperation in areas like communications or services. Concretely, this agreement will be effective through the launch of a “joint” commission composed by two members of each administration and working groups that will ensure the implementation of collaborative strategies and the organization of meetings day between actors of each city.

Furthermore, this agreement also takes in to account the European dimension with the perspective to consolidate and promote the position of both cities in the European Atlantic Arc. Indeed, according to Serna and Azkuna, “playing a major role within the Atlantic Arc represents a fundamental issue from a political point of view in order to achieve a real positioning and become a dynamic player in the European integration process.”