United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa), the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) and Platforma- join their efforts to organize the 1st Forum of Africa-Europe Local governments.
The forum will be held on Monday, 27 November 2017, in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, in the framework of the Summit between the European Union and the African Union (28-29 November 2017).
In the current global context, subnational governments everywhere are faced with phenomena such as rapid urbanization, climate change, unprecedented migration flows, youth unemployment… It is therefore clear that local governments need to be empowered to ensure sustainable and cohesive development at local level, be involved in policy design at all levels and be in the driving seat of policy implementation.
The African Union’s Agenda 2063 commits to transformative leadership at the local level. Moreover, the reviewed “European Consensus on Development” and the “Next steps for a sustainable European future” explicitly recognize the role of decentralization processes and of local governments in achieving a sustainable future. Therefore, the time is right for the regional associations of local and regional governments to propose concrete ways to contribute.
Promoting a new political dynamic
The 5th EU-Africa Summit offers a major opportunity to reaffirm the commitment of the local and regional governments to promote a new political dynamic. This strategic partnership between the two continents should embrace the promotion of interaction between all levels of governance, articulating the local, national, sub-regional and continental tiers of government as the indispensable way to promote political dialogue and to ensure the necessary coherence and efficiency of the cooperation policies.
In line with the strategic partnership of UCLG Africa and CEMR-PLATFORMA with the European Commission and the long-standing relations between UCLG Africa and the African Union, the proposal to host an Africa-Europe Local Government forum received support from the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs, Federica Mogherini, and from the presidency of the African Union Specialized Technical Committee 8 “public service, urban development, decentralization and governance”.
In this positive setting, the political leadership of CEMR, UCLG-Africa and PLATFORMA can mark a clear spot for local and regional governments’ contributions in the future cooperation between Africa and Europe.
UCLG Africa ensures the mobilisation of its members for this important summit. Nearly 50 African mayors including the members of the Bureau of the Network of Local Elected Women of Africa (REFELA) are expected in Abidjan. Indeed, meetings of the 17th ordinary session of the Executive Committee of UCLG Africa and the annual meeting of the Pan-African Council of the Organization will be held on November, 24th and 25th , 2017, on the margins and upstream of the Europe-Africa Forum of Local Governments.
Source: With Platforma