General Assembly of the Association of Communes of Romania  

The 22nd Ordinary Session of the General Assembly of the Association of Communes of Romania (A.Co.R.) was held on 17-20 February 2019, at Rin Grand Hotel, Bucharest. It was attended by more than 500 mayors of communes from across the country belonging to the association, and by representatives of the Romanian Government.

Since its creation, the Association of Communes of Romania has built collaborative relations with a number of international bodies representing public administration, including the European Committee of the Regions (CoR). During the General Assembly, the guest speakers of the CoR stressed the importance of the European Union for the future of citizens and collaboration between the associative structures.

Markku Markkula , First Vice-President of the Committee of the Regions and representative of the European People's Party, said: "Communities are the engine of the development of the European Union. This year we are at an intersection of the future of the European Union and we hope that on 9 June we will bring together not only the governments but also the representatives of the communities. I know the importance of Moldova for Romania, I want to emphasise that we have a collaboration involving the Eastern countries. We believe that Europe needs to have a bottom-up approach, with a rural, urban and regional identity. Mayors represent citizens and you know how to implement cohesion funds and related policies in your regions best."

The second speaker, Cristophe Rouillon, representative of the Party of European Socialists, Mayor of Coulaines and Vice-President of the French Mayors' Association, said: "It Is important to have today among us mayors like you who serve the interests of the territories they represent. Europe is a chance to support you in local projects. Europe is a chance for research, innovation and energy transition. Europe is a chance for agriculture like in my region. Agriculture is also a very important aspect for Romania's economy and that is why we must support it. Europe is also a chance to promote tourism, 514 million Europeans can travel across Europe without undertaking any formality. There is an extra chance for Romania to be more attractive and much more popular. Europe is also a chance for twinning with many communes in Europe. Therefore Europe must be the priority of all citizens."

The third speaker, Tadeusz Truskolaski, Vice-President of the European Alliance and Mayor of the Polish city of Białystok, said, "We have promoted innovation, cultural heritage and the Structural Funds as the ideal instrument for promoting development. Its simplification is the key to investment. We emphasise the importance of Structural Funds and innovation in the area of rural development. We encourage cooperation with regional authorities in the European Union to develop projects for communities. We help cities and villages in this rural revival and we propose to have a rural project similar to that for European capitals of culture."

Source: 
Association of Communes of Romania