European Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Cretu on Friday said she hopes Romania’s towns and cities will fully take advantage of the European funds available under the current financial framework.
“I would like to see by the end of my tenure, that Romania’s towns and cities have fully taken advantage of the opportunity offered to them under the current financial framework. It is a huge responsibility incumbent on the future mayors to prove they deserve the confidence vested with them. Equally huge will be the responsibility incumbent on people to elect their mayor fully knowledgeably. Their choices will reflect on the future development of each of Romania’s towns and cities individually, and of Romanian overall,” Cretu is quoted as having said in a press statement on Friday.
She mentioned that more than 100 billion euros are currently being earmarked for urban development under European structural and investment funds and, for the first time, 15 billion euros will be directly managed by towns and cities.
“An EU member state for almost 10 years, Romania is receiving the third largest allocation for sustainable urban development, after Poland and Italy. The Romanian Government has decided that 20 percent of the total European funds earmarked under the ongoing financial framework will be directly managed by the locally elected officials. Thus, 39 county capitals will play, for the first time, a major part in the implementation of cohesion policies. The local administrations of these cities will have to realise the confidence vested in them honours them and obliges them at the same time. It largely depends on the leaders of these cities if mature projects are developed that will meet the real needs of their communities. Money is not everything. Improved administrative capabilities, determination and organisation are equally important for successful project implementation. From this perspective, Sunday’s local elections are very important, a decisive moment for our future,” said Cretu.