Three languages, five regions, one common identity: The Euregio Meuse-Rhine with its three member states comprises 11,000 square kilometres and has around 3,8 million inhabitants. Half of them live in Belgium, a third in Germany, and a fifth in the Netherlands.
In the centre of Europe
The Euregio Meuse-Rhine includes the Belgian provinces of Limburg and Liège with the German-speaking Community in Belgium, the Dutch region of South Limburg, the German districts of Aachen, Düren, Euskirchen and Heinsberg and the city of Aachen itself, with a total area of 10,470 square kilometres, a population of 3,8 million and approximately 250,000 businesses. About half of the population lives in Belgium, one third in Germany and one fifth in the Netherlands.
The Euregio Meuse-Rhine can be seen as the centre and engine of European integration with the advantages of open borders and the common currency. The Euregio has always seen itself as a stage for cross-border contacts and cultural and economic exchange.
Its central location and efficient transport infrastructure allow easy access to the major European economic centres. For example, the Thalys high-speed train connect European capitals like Brussels, Paris and London. Via the road network, an area with a population of around 55 million can be reached within four hours. The Port of Liège stands out as the third largest inland port in Europe (after Duisburg and Paris). The Port of Liège is directly connected to the seaports of Antwerp and Rotterdam. The airports of Maastricht and Liège in the Euregio and the short distance to international airports in Brussels, Cologne/Bonn and Düsseldorf allow European and intercontinental flights.
A region on the move
The continuous flow of cross-border commuters documents the close interconnection of the Euregio's national labour markets. A well-developed road network guarantees a high degree of mobility for the population of the Euregio. High-speed rail transport (HSR) currently offers a convincing alternative to air or car in international competition.
With stops in Aachen and Liège, the Euregio Meuse-Rhine forms part of the European high-speed rail network. From Aachen and Liège, European metropolises can be reached in a short travel time by modern high-speed trains such as the Thalys and ICE. High-speed stops are extremely valuable transport hubs in the European rail network and allow fast and strong connections to the regional transport networks. The "Euregio Circle Line" rail link, which is intended to provide continuous and fast cross-border connections between the important cities of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine and thus also to the high-speed stations, is an important cornerstone of a Euregional and intraregional development network. Since the end of 2018, it has connected the cities of Aachen and Maastricht - an extension to Liège is planned.
Research and development
High-quality services in the research and development sector are very important for the whole region. The high number of universities and research institutes are generating a new highly qualified and internationally oriented generation of scientists with a focus on technological and scientific fields. This enormous technological potential is a relevant factor in the structural change of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine.
Situated in the heart of Europe, the Euregio Meuse-Rhine with its five regions, three countries and just as many languages offers numerous strengths with regard to the European idea: a rich cultural heritage, immense scientific potential, future-oriented economic structures, scenic diversity and, last but not least, direct experience of living and working together with European neighbours.