Eurocities mayors demand greater participation and governance in the EU

The European Mayors’ Summit was held in Barcelona on 7 and 8 November under the slogan “Strengthening democracy and the role of cities in the European Union”. The summit was jointly organised by the City Council and the Eurocities network. The 24 municipal representatives signed a declaration demanding greater participation and involvement for cities in EU governance and decision-making.

08/11/2023 16:42 h

Ajuntament de Barcelona

Participants in the European summit included cities such as Athens, Tallinn, Tirana, Milan, Oulu, Bilbao, Malaga, Murcia, Bologna, Brussels, Budapest, Helsinki, Porto, Sant Boi, Turin and Vienna. The summit is one of the activities organised by Barcelona as the European Capital of Democracy and was held within the context of the Smart City World Congress 2023.

Joint declaration

To round off the summit, the participating cities gave their support to a Declaration of European Cities on European Policy Creation and Democracy, directed at the European Council and the member states of the European Union and structured into five points to:

  • Strengthen democracy, foster decentralisation, guarantee local self-governance and the effective application of the principle of subsidiarity defined in the Treaty of the European Union and, at the same time, strengthen ties with local governments.
  • Promote tax decentralisation and local financial sustainability, fundamental for empowering city governments.
  • Boost the urban dimension of EU policies. The rapid development and growing importance of cities requires EU policies to focus on urban matters where cities are still not involved.
  • Involve cities in EU presidencies and the configuration of the Council. Including cities in the design and application of decision-making and political priorities will not only help towards more efficient application, but also reinforce democratic responsibility.
  • Reform the European Committee of the Regions to increase the participation of municipal and metropolitan governments.

The full Declaration of European Cities on European Policy Creation and Democracy can be found here.

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