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Saturday, October 1, 2022

European Commission joins forces with govt associations to boost sustainable development

The European Commission on Monday, September 12, 2022, signed framework partnership agreements with five global associations of local authorities: the Association Internationale des Maires Francophones (AIMF), the Commonwealth Local Governments Forum (CLGF), Platforma/Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR), the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), and the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa).

European Commission
L-R: Jan van Zanen, Innocent uwimana , Anne Hidalgo, Jutta Urpilainen, Fatimatou Abdel Malick, and Stefano Bonaccini

Supported by €50 million from the NDICI-Global Europe instrument, the agreements support the role of local authorities and their associations in formulating policies to promote local, regional, and global level sustainable development.

Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen, said: “Local and regional governments and their associations are key partners for the EU in its external action because of their role in driving sustainable and inclusive development in a way that creates more opportunity for all and leaves no one behind.

“It is our collective responsibility to put back on track the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals. By 2027, the EU will support local authorities’ work in pursuing the Sustainable Development Goals and addressing inequalities with at least €500 million, in addition to the €50 million that support their associations under these five agreements.”

The five renewed partnership agreements, that will be in force until April 31, 2026, recognise the contribution of local and regional governments to the design and implementation of policies that are required to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular for making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable. The agreements formalise a set of common interests and objectives, and provide an opportunity to:

  • Strengthen the voice of EU local and regional governments and their associations in EU development policy and global agendas;
  • Enhance the engagement of EU local and regional governments and their associations in decentralised cooperation, focusing on EU priorities and the Sustainable Development Goals, in partnership with peers in partner countries;
  • Improve current practices in decentralised cooperation, through efficiency and innovation;
  • Raise awareness and build the capacities of local and regional governments and their associations as governance and development policy actors;
  • Strengthen the capacity of associations of local authorities to coordinate the voices of all partners, create synergies, and add value as a network, ensuring good governance and sustainable partnerships.

The five local government Presidents participating were: 

  • Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris (France), President of the International Association of French-Speaking Mayors (AIMF) 
  • Stefano Bonaccini, President of the Emilia-Romagna Region (Italy) and of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) & PLATFORMA 
  • Innocent Uwimana, President of the Rwanda Association of Local Government Authorities Authorities, Chairperson of the Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF) 
  •  Jan van Zanen, Mayor of The Hague (Netherlands), Co-President of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) 
  •  Fatimetou Abdel Malick, President of the Regional Council of Nouakchott (Mauritania), President of United Cities and Local Governments – Africa (UCLG Africa).

UCLG Africa president was accompanied by the secretary general, Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi.

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