Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
European section of United Cities and Local Governments

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Governance and citizenship

Europe Day - 09.05.2016

Reflecting on the future of local and regional Europe: Europe 2030
For Europe Day, CEMR calls for a serious reflection on the future of local and regional Europe, looking towards Europe 2030.

For several years, Europe has been battling through multiple large-scale crises: economic crisis, social crisis, or even the refugee crisis.

Although the debates and decision-making take place at the highest level, local and regional governments are the ones on the frontline of these crises, and it’s at the local and regional level, where their impact is felt the most, that they have to be dealt with. For example, towns and regions are the ones that have to host refugees, and they also have to take care of the organisation and financing of accommodation, interpreters and healthcare, among others.

Concerning the economic crisis, towns find themselves on the frontline once again, having to endure serious budget cuts. CEMR even published a position paper on this topic, stating the current rules of the Stability and Growth Pact require more flexibility.

For this reason, we have started a debate on the future of Europe: Europe 2030. What does our project for Europe 2030 entail?

We have a project to prepare a bluebook with towns and regions’ suggestions to reinvent a Europe that will be able to face current challenges, including radicalism, unemployment, environmental problems or gender equality, to name a few.

This bluebook project was presented by Frédéric Vallier, CEMR secretary general, during the CEMR congress that took place in Nicosia (Cyprus), from 20 to 22 April 2016. We welcomed mayors from all over Europe to discuss and find solutions to these challenges. During the congress, Iñigo de la Serna, CEMR President and mayor of Santander (Spain), and Constantinos Yiorkadjis, mayor of Nicosia (Cyprus), signed a joint declaration, sharing their vision for the future of Europe.

The last words of this declaration show hope and determination for the future of Europe: “To the question of whether Europe has reached a point of no return, our answer is a resounding NO. For CEMR, tomorrow starts today and we are determined to shape a local and regional vision for Europe in 2030.”
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