Apr 27, 2024 | European Focus

Members of the Irish Delegation to the Committee of the Regions and IREO officials pictured at the Irish festival stand during the 10th European Summit of Regions and Cities at Mons in Belgium.

The 10th European Summit of Regions and Cities at Mons in Belgium (18-19 March) was attended by over 3,500 local and regional leaders from across Europe who gathered to shape the agenda for Europe’s future, highlighting the power of local and regional authorities to deliver and tackle challenges.

A two-day ‘Festival of Regions’, which took place alongside the plenary and workshop session, provided an opportunity for regions from across Europe to present their assets and their involvement in EU funding programmes.

Ireland’s festival stand, which showcased the work of Ireland’s Regional Assemblies and the Irish Regions European Office in Brussels, offered the opportunity for Ireland to exchange ideas and build partnerships with regions from across Europe.

On the plenary floor, Ireland was represented by eight members of the Irish Delegation to the Committee of the Regions. The Delegation members took part in four plenary sessions and three workshops during the two-day summit.

The highlight of the plenary sessions was the adoption of the Mons Declaration, which contains five key demands for European leaders:

  1. Boost public investment.
  2. Embrace local solutions for climate goals.
  3. Address regional needs.
  4. Local and regional views respected in EU enlargement and reforms.
  5. Respecting active subsidiarity.

Ireland had a strong presence at the workshops with Cllr Kate Feeney (Dun-Laoghaire Rathdown County Council and Eastern and Midland Regional Assembly) and Cllr Dan Boyle (Cork City Council and Southern Regional Assembly) contributing to the discussion on the forthcoming EU Elections on 7 June, and the role which local and regional voices can play within them. Elsewhere, Cllr Kieran McCarthy (Cork City Council and Southern Regional Assembly) was a panellist for the ‘Co-creating cities and regions with young people’ workshop. (Source: Irish Regions European Office)

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