Baltic Development Forum


The Baltic Development Forum (BDF) is an independent think tank and high-level network for decision-makers from business, politics, academia and media in the Baltic Sea Region. It was established in 1998 by the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark Uffe Ellemann-Jensen.

The BDF defines the Baltic Sea Region as including the Baltic countries Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, the Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, Northern Germany (Hansestadt Hamburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Schleswig-Holstein), Northern Poland (Pomorskie, Warminsko-Mazurskie and Zachodnio-Pomorskie), and Russia’s North-western region including Kaliningrad.

The mission of the BDF is to initiate and facilitate processes to create sustainable growth and a competitive Baltic Sea Region. The BDF also implements regional projects within energy efficiency, investment promotion and regional identity building.

One of the main networking activities is the annual summit which offers a unique forum for regional decision-makers from business, politics, academia and media to discuss about business opportunities and develop new regional strategies.


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  • Ports in the EU-28 handled 3 729 million tonnes of seaborne goods in 2011.

  • 13 Member States presented decreases in goods freight transport by sea between 2006 and 2011 (e.g. Croatia -17 % and Romania -17 %).

  • The highest increases in goods freight transport by sea were observed in Lithuania (+57 %) and Latvia (+18 %).

© Eurostat 2013