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Participants in the 8th European Summit of Regions and Cities adopt Bucharest Declaration titled “Building the EU from the ground up with our regions and cities”. CoR President says the fundamental message is to get closer to the citizens in order to relaunch the EU

The participants in the 8th European Summit of Regions and Cities (CoR) adopted on Friday the Bucharest Declaration, dubbed “EU construction from foundation, together with regions and cities”, a document expressing the belief of the regional and local elected that “the European Union needs its cities and regions the way they need the European Union”.

The participants in the 8th European Summit of Regions and Cities (CoR) adopted on Friday the Bucharest Declaration, dubbed “EU construction from foundation, together with regions and cities”, a document expressing the belief of the regional and local elected that “the European Union needs its cities and regions the way they need the European Union”.

Within the summit hosted at the Palace of Parliament, the Declaration was officially handed to President Klaus Iohannis by the CoR President Karl-Heinz Lambertz, and is the contribution of the local and regional elected with the European Union in preparing the strategic agenda 2019-2024 that will be presented to the EU leaders in Sibiu, on 9 May 2019.

In his speech, the CoR president asked President Iohannis to present the Bucharest Declaration to the heads of states and governments who will attend within eight weeks the Sibiu summit.

The European Union, built on the principles of liberty, solidarity, democracy, human rights’ observance, the observance of the fundamental freedoms and of the rule of law, has brought to the Europe population a durable peace and development period. Europe changes with unprecedented speed in the context of globalization, the digital revolution, the climate and demographic changes. Should we don’t want the European integration become a reversible phenomenon, these changes that are crystallising social, economic and territorial inequalities must be joined, configured and regulated through a joint effort of all governing levels, in particular when a third of the public spending and over one half of the public investment are carried out at subnational level, the Bucharest Declaration reads.

The document includes ten measures aiming at the strengthening of the democratic foundation of the European Union and of the EU actions on local plan in order to build a better future for the European citizens.

In reference to the consolidation of the democratic foundation of the EU, the local and regional elected say that the multi-level governance is essential to ensuring an active, even participation of all governmental levels in a trustworthy spirit, this loyal cooperation among all levels being essential for the EU be capable to achieve its economic and social progress’ objectives for its citizens, regardless of the place they live.

Moreover, the enforcement of the notion dubbed “active subsidiarity” is important to making decisions that are to reflect the European added value and be closer to the citizens, in a fully responsible, efficient and transparent manner.

Another measure aims to increase the decentralization level, with observance of the national frameworks, in order to increase transparence, responsibility and quality of drafting policies.

At the same time, the connection between the EU and its citizens should be enhanced, the regional and local elected sustaining the demand referring to the existence of several channels of democratic participation.

It is paramount to sensitize the EU citizens’ awareness, the youth’s in particular, regarding the European dimension of their identity and citizenship, especially though education, culture and youth awareness, with a view to cultivate the feeling of belonging to the European project, the Declaration reads.

As for the enhancement of the EU actions on the local plan so to build a better future for its citizens, the Declaration provides that the cities and regions should have the capacity to fully play their role in accomplishing transition to a durable, neutral Europe from the carbon dioxide emissions’ viewpoint.

The Single Market should be completed by policies capable to guarantee the exercising of the single market’s liberties by all and the observance of equity and social justice. The EU social dimension should be consolidated so that the social rights are put on equal footing with the economic rights. The European policies in the social inclusion and in particular the policies regarding the migrants’ integration cannot be successful if the local and regional authorities have no adequate, direct access means to EU funding, the Declaration adds.

Another measure has in view to eliminate persistent economic, social and territorial gaps, which is a major challenge for the EU future. In this respect, the EU regional and local elected say that the cohesion policy especially through the European territorial regional cooperation should be maintained after 2020 for all regions, based on the principles of an approach grounded on the zone’s reality, on European partnerships, on shared management and multi-level governance.

According to the Declaration, the EU public investment level remains too low to offer the adequate infrastructure and public services, hence it is paramount that the deficit as regards the public investment be slashed, the EU having to ensure the local and regional authorities the necessary space to support the investment.

The EU leaders have to endow the EU with an ambitious budget, capable to allow it to face the future challenges and draft long-term, sustainable EU policies. In a context of political, social and environment emergency we demand a quick agreement on the next multiannual financial framework, in accordance with the views already set by the European Parliament and the CoR, the Bucharest Declaration concludes.

Within the summit hosted at the Palace of Parliament, the Declaration was officially handed to President Klaus Iohannis by the CoR President Karl-Heinz Lambertz, and is the contribution of the local and regional elected with the European Union in preparing the strategic agenda 2019-2024 that will be presented to the EU leaders in Sibiu, on 9 May 2019.

In his speech, the CoR president asked President Iohannis to present the Bucharest Declaration to the heads of states and governments who will attend within eight weeks the Sibiu summit.

The European Union, built on the principles of liberty, solidarity, democracy, human rights’ observance, the observance of the fundamental freedoms and of the rule of law, has brought to the Europe population a durable peace and development period. Europe changes with unprecedented speed in the context of globalization, the digital revolution, the climate and demographic changes. Should we don’t want the European integration become a reversible phenomenon, these changes that are crystallising social, economic and territorial inequalities must be joined, configured and regulated through a joint effort of all governing levels, in particular when a third of the public spending and over one half of the public investment are carried out at subnational level, the Bucharest Declaration reads.

The document includes ten measures aiming at the strengthening of the democratic foundation of the European Union and of the EU actions on local plan in order to build a better future for the European citizens.

In reference to the consolidation of the democratic foundation of the EU, the local and regional elected say that the multi-level governance is essential to ensuring an active, even participation of all governmental levels in a trustworthy spirit, this loyal cooperation among all levels being essential for the EU be capable to achieve its economic and social progress’ objectives for its citizens, regardless of the place they live.

Moreover, the enforcement of the notion dubbed “active subsidiarity” is important to making decisions that are to reflect the European added value and be closer to the citizens, in a fully responsible, efficient and transparent manner.

Another measure aims to increase the decentralization level, with observance of the national frameworks, in order to increase transparence, responsibility and quality of drafting policies.

At the same time, the connection between the EU and its citizens should be enhanced, the regional and local elected sustaining the demand referring to the existence of several channels of democratic participation.

It is paramount to sensitize the EU citizens’ awareness, the youth’s in particular, regarding the European dimension of their identity and citizenship, especially though education, culture and youth awareness, with a view to cultivate the feeling of belonging to the European project, the Declaration reads.

As for the enhancement of the EU actions on the local plan so to build a better future for its citizens, the Declaration provides that the cities and regions should have the capacity to fully play their role in accomplishing transition to a durable, neutral Europe from the carbon dioxide emissions’ viewpoint.

The Single Market should be completed by policies capable to guarantee the exercising of the single market’s liberties by all and the observance of equity and social justice. The EU social dimension should be consolidated so that the social rights are put on equal footing with the economic rights. The European policies in the social inclusion and in particular the policies regarding the migrants’ integration cannot be successful if the local and regional authorities have no adequate, direct access means to EU funding, the Declaration adds.

Another measure has in view to eliminate persistent economic, social and territorial gaps, which is a major challenge for the EU future. In this respect, the EU regional and local elected say that the cohesion policy especially through the European territorial regional cooperation should be maintained after 2020 for all regions, based on the principles of an approach grounded on the zone’s reality, on European partnerships, on shared management and multi-level governance.

According to the Declaration, the EU public investment level remains too low to offer the adequate infrastructure and public services, hence it is paramount that the deficit as regards the public investment be slashed, the EU having to ensure the local and regional authorities the necessary space to support the investment.

The EU leaders have to endow the EU with an ambitious budget, capable to allow it to face the future challenges and draft long-term, sustainable EU policies. In a context of political, social and environment emergency we demand a quick agreement on the next multiannual financial framework, in accordance with the views already set by the European Parliament and the CoR, the Bucharest Declaration concludes.

 

CoR President says the fundamental message is to get closer to the citizens in order to relaunch the EU

 

Our fundamental message is that we have to get closer to the citizens in order to relaunch the European Union and the best way to do this thing is through the involvement of local communities, President of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) Karl-Heinz Lambertz stated at the end of the 8th European Summit of Regions and Cities, which was held on Thursday and Friday in Bucharest, at the Palace of Parliament.

Karl-Heinz Lambertz told a press conference that within the two days of the summit, the regional and local officeholders debated topics included in the Bucharest Declaration adopted on Friday and called “Building the EU from the ground up with our regions and cities.”

 

European Commissioner Cretu: Cohesion Policy aims to bring Europe closer to citizens

 

European Commissioner for Regional Policy Corina Cretu ruled on Friday at the European Summit of Regions and Cities held at the Palace of Parliament to involve local and regional authorities in European Union decision-making, arguing that the Cohesion Policy also aims to bring ‘Europe closer to the citizens”.

Cretu said that in the current period, marked by the rise of populism in Europe, there seem to be gaps between the governors and the governed. The European Union is not about Brussels, it is about regions and European citizens, she added.

The representative of the EU executive also referred to the principle of subsidiarity, which stipulates that, in areas that do not fall within the exclusive competence of the European Union, the protection of the Member States’ decision-making and action capacity and legitimization of the Union’s intervention in case the objectives of an action cannot be sufficiently achieved by the Member States, but can be better achieved at EU level due to the scale and effects of the action envisaged. She stressed in this regard that it is necessary to ensure that European policies have added value and that impact assessments at EU level will take into account the local assessment.

At the beginning of May last year, the European Commission proposed a moderate reduction in funding for the Common Agricultural Policy and the Cohesion Policy – about 5 percent for each of them – to reflect the new reality of a European Union of 27 Member States.

These policies will be upgraded to ensure that they can continue to produce results, consuming fewer resources, and that they can also support new priorities. For example, the cohesion policy will have an increasingly important role to play in supporting structural reforms and in the long-term integration of migrants.

Overall, the European Commission proposed a long-term budget of 1.135 billion euro in commitment loans (expressed in 2018 prices) for the period 2021-2027, the equivalent of 1.11 percent of the EU27 gross national income. This level of commitments translates into 1.105 billion euro (or 1.08 percent of the gross national product) in payment appropriation (in 2018 prices).

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