The Šventoji FLAG area is characterised by a particularly attractive geographical location, exceptional nature, beaches that meet international standards and numerous cultural and natural heritage sites. Palanga is conveniently placed geographical, located 15km from the Latvian border, 25km north of Klaipėda railway station and 30km north of the Klaipėda international sea ferry terminal. The A13 highway connects Palanga and Šventoji. Palanga international airport is about 7km from the city centre.
The city of Palanga has resort status and its advantages include its accessibility, natural environment, the reputation of the resort, local tourism flows, and the increase of inbound tourism flows from neighbouring countries. This is one of Lithuania’s few regions not facing depopulation and with a growing economy.
Fisherman in the Šventoji FLAG fish along the Baltic Sea coast and in the Šventoji River, where stocks and catches remain stable throughout the year. The FLAG also has three processing enterprises on its territory. Šventoji seaport – a state-owned seaport, can be found in the FLAG area. The main purpose of the port is to service fishing vessels, facilitate the initial processing of fish, develop trade, service vessels of the state border guard service of the Republic of Lithuania, enable specialised rescues (related to spillages, fires and marine environmental protection) and shipping and fishing controls.
Challenges to the FLAG include creating cooperation between the area’s fisheries and other sectors as the diversification of fisheries activities is seen as an important aspect of the area long-term development. While diversification is an important objective, another key challenge for the FLAG is achieving this development while also maintaining the regions cultural values and traditions.
The FLAG has nine protected areas (including the main Seaside Regional Park) and three Natura 2000 sites (including the Baltic Sea Coastline and the Karklės Marine Reserve).
The FLAG strategy supports the following objectives:
FLAG project examples and ideas will be focused on the following:
The FLAG makes regular calls for projects which are published on the FLAG website.
As the Šventoji FLAG was founded in the 2014-2020 period, it is still developing its thematic experience. The FLAG is interested in transnational cooperation projects focused on R&D and innovation.
The FLAG has a total 14 members which represent various organisations, institutions and enterprises operating in the territory. The Šventoji region FLAG board is a collegial governing body. 46% of its members come from private or non-governmental organisations, 27% come from the fishing and/or aquaculture businesses and 27% are local government representatives.