“We are facing multiple crises today and the need for shared, multi-level governance to find adequate responses to these challenges is more critical than ever”, stressed the President of the Congress, Leendert Verbeek, at the opening of the 4th Parliamentary Forum of Regions in Rabat, Morocco, on 19 October 2022.
“The Congress has been promoting governance where each level is strong with its own competences, resources and decision-making autonomy, and where all levels work together to address common challenges, on both sides of the Mediterranean,” Mr Verbeek underlined, adding that the Congress was providing its support to strengthening local and regional self-government and promoting citizen participation at local and regional level in the Kingdom of Morocco, which was the first country to be granted the status of Partner for Local Democracy with the Congress in 2019.
Stressing the importance of cooperation between the Congress and Morocco, the Congress President highlighted the Council of Europe’s 2022-2025 Neighbourhood Partnership with Morocco, and reaffirmed the Congress’ commitment to sharing experiences and lessons learned from the implementation of the European Charter of Local Self-Government in European countries with Moroccan partners. “The Congress will continue to strengthen its partnership with Morocco, both through peer dialogue with the Moroccan delegation and through our activities here on the ground, to ensure the success of advanced regionalisation in the country”, he concluded.
Organised by the House of Councillors of the Moroccan Parliament under the theme “The institutionalization of the Contractual Approach: Fundamental pillar for the acceleration of advanced regionalization implementation”, the Forum aimed to strengthen contractual relations between the State and regions as well as between regions, provinces and local authorities in Morocco.
On the occasion of the Forum, the Congress President held bilateral meetings with Enaam Mayara, Speaker of the House of Councillors of Morocco, Mbarka Bouaida, President of the Association of Regions of Morocco and Head of the Moroccan Delegation to the Congress; Abdelaziz Derouiche, President of the Moroccan Association of Presidents of Councils of Prefectures and Provinces and Mounir Laymouri, President of the Moroccan Association of Presidents of Local Councils, who are also members of the Moroccan delegation.