EU plans’ success will depend upon full involvement of regional and local authorities.Commenting on the conclusion of the European Summit, the President of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), Apostolos Tzitzikostas, said: "The measures agreed by the EU Member States are an historic example of solidarity and address an unprecedented threat. The EU budget and the Recovery Plan must now be quickly put at the service of all people in regions, cities and villages across Europe. It is vital to invest EU funds where they are needed and to make the most out of every euro". ‘‘Despite controversial cuts and last-minute concessions, they offer concrete opportunities to help local communities protect citizens, relaunch the economy and boost the green and digital transition. These funds will allow to improve health facilities and services, to strengthen the capacity of our schools and universities. Local communities will be able to make their transport and public infrastructures more resilient and less polluting and will speed up digitalisation. They will help SMEs survive the emergency and will accompany our industries in becoming more energy efficient and more competitive’’ continued President Tzitzikostas. We all – EU institutions, national, regional and local governments – share now the responsibility to put all available tools at work for our citizens and businesses. This requires a real partnership between all levels of governance. We must, avoid over-centralisation which would undermine the impact of these exceptional measures. I am confident that the European Parliament will now play its crucial role to finalise the deal and improve the regulatory framework by making sure that Europe's regions, cities and villages contribute to effective investment decisions and to their implementation on the ground’’ concluded. BACKGROUND
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the European Committee of the Regions has voiced the voice of the one million regional and local elected politicians across Europe.
In its Declaration adopted on 8 May the CoR asked for:
1) A plan for a sustainable, resilient and social Europe including an EU Recovery Fund, connected to an ambitious EU budget and based on European debt insurance, worth at least € 500 billion.
2) An EU Health Mechanism to purchase medical supply and to assess, refit and monitor regional health systems' capacity investing on healthcare resilience and sustainability.
3) Funding schemes to help regional and local communities compensate local tax losses and reengineer public services making them digital, sustainable and resilient;
4) Simplified procedures to fund sustainable local infrastructure.
5) Dedicated facilities and legal arrangements to support for SMEs, tourism, culture.
6) A rural inclusion plan to boost innovation, entrepreneurship and connectivity in rural areas.
Read the Declaration here
To read the CoR political priorities for the years 20220-2025 click here Contact: President's Spokesperson:
Tel. +32 (0)498 98 23 49Michele.Cercone@cor.europa.eu