Local and regional leaders reaffirmed, before European Commission Vice President, Dubravka Šuica, their willingness to develop a network of European Union (EU) regional and local advisers to enhance citizen involvement through more than one million local and regional leaders across Europe.
The Vice-President of the European Commission for Democracy and Demography heard members of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) commend the role the Commission is playing in ensuring that the voice of regions, towns and villages is adequately represented at the Conference and reiterated the call for the debate on the future of Europe to reach citizens through local and regional authorities, responding to their demands.
Apostolos Tzitsikostas, President of the European Committee of Regions and Governor of the Greek Region of Central Macedonia, said by way of a collective pledge: “All regional and local delegates will work hard for the success of the Conference to bring Europe closer to its people.”
Vasco Alves Cordeiro (PT/PSE), first vice-president of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), former president of the Government and now a member of the Azores regional parliament, said that “the issue of dialogue with citizens cannot be just one exercise that ends with Conference on the Future of Europe”. For the next president of the CoR, “this dialogue brings an enlightened and informed exercise of citizenship and must continue after the Conference”.
Former Committee Chairman Karl-Heinz Lambertz presented the idea of a permanent structured dialogue with citizens, together with the role of the Committee of the Regions and also the possibility of treaty amendments. These will be questions that will have to be answered on the day of the end of the Conference on the Future of Europe, sometime in the spring of 2022.