The Bothnian Arc is a coastal zone along the Gulf of Bothnia in the northernmost part of the Baltic Sea. The area covers six Swedish municipalities (Haparanda, Kalix, Luleå, Boden, Piteå and Skellefteå) as well as four Finnish sub-regional areas (Kemi-Tornio, Oulu Arc, Oulu and Ylivieska), one city (Raahe) and one regional council (Central Ostrobothnia). About 710,000 people live in the region.
The strategic location of the Bothnian Arc in northern Europe makes it an important intersection for transport and communications in the region. The main artery of this communications network is a combined road and rail corridor which runs along the coast. The area also has several airports and ports which operate throughout the year.
Northern Sweden and Finland have many centres of education with a varied range of courses. Most educational facilities are centred on the coastal area of the Bothnian Arc. The largest educational institution of the area in Finland is the University of Oulu while the Luleå University of Technology is the largest one in Sweden.
Several solid, globally-operating companies operate in the Bothnian Arc area in various industries, including ICT, forestry and metal industries. Other interesting new areas currently experiencing strong growth include the energy, health and welfare sectors. Companies are joining forces in all of these areas to form enterprise clusters.
The main vision of the Bothnian Arc is to become the most functional and integrated border region in Northern Europe – with strong economic growth, high-quality social welfare and a sustainable, clean environment.
Key focus areas:
- Increasing regional cooperation and activating various parties
- Enhancing cooperation between companies and organizations
- Strategic development activities
- Marketing and raising awareness of the Bothnian Arc
The Bothnian Arc encourages and activates various parties to collaborate across borders by building networks and creating new projects. Work that eliminates the obstacles related to cross-border cooperation becomes stronger when various parties from different sectors work actively together.