The Regional Council of North Karelia has close cooperation links with the Republic of Karelia in Russia and several European regions. Widening the cooperation scope to the rest of the world is one of the development aims. Council participates in several European networks and projects.
The East and North Finland EU office represents the interest of the regions of Central Ostrobothnia, Kainuu, Lapland, North Karelia, Northern Ostrobothnia, North Savo and South Savo in Brussels. In close collaboration with the regional councils the Brussels office aims to improve the competitiveness and conditions of the businesses throughout the East and North of Finland.
The Council also implements the Karelia CBC programme together with Kainuu, Oulu Region and Republic of Karelia and monitors the implementation of the European Territorial Cooperation Programmes (Northern Periphery and Artic, Interreg Baltic Sea Region and Interreg Europe) in the region of North Karelia.
North Karelia is part of Euregio Karelia, founded on 2000 by the Regional Councils of Kainuu, Northern Ostrobothnia and North Karelia on the Finnish side and by the Republic of Karelia on the Russian side. Euregio Karelia's object is to promote the development of living conditions in the border regions, to deepen programme and project-based cross-border cooperation and to bring strategic and political guidance into the cooperation. Summary of Euregio Karelia strategy 2020.
North Karelia is also a member of Barents region and Association of European Border Regions.