“The Assembly of European Regions (AER) is an important strategic partner of the Congress, with common values and principles,” said the Secretary General of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Andreas Kiefer, at the AER General Assembly, 14 October 2022. “At the Congress, we recognise the regions as key partners in the European project, a bridge between the State and the citizens within their local communities. For us, stronger regions with stronger competences and financial autonomy are a crucial part of the multi-level governance system. This is what unites our two institutions,” he added.
Mr. Kiefer stressed the crucial role of the two institutions in the face of current challenges such as Russia's war against Ukraine, the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, migration, economic and social problems, the polarization of society, and declining public trust. He called for continuing the strategic partnership between the two institutions with the aim of “reinventing Europe and working together on common priorities” – such as the contribution to the implementation of the United Nations 2030 Agenda and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals at regional level.