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Gudrun MOSLER-TÖRNSTRÖM: “To achieve sustainable development, supportive and participatory regional democracy should be our priority”

Loutraki (Greece) 11 May 2018
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© Stavros Giannoulis

© Stavros Giannoulis

“Regions should be our strategic partners, the key to the development of our societies, for our social, economic and cultural future” stated Gudrun MOSLER-TÖRNSTRÖM, addressing The Economist conference “Governance and regional arteries for growth: Europe’s momentum – Greece’s impetus”, held in Loutraki (Greece) on 11 May 2018.

The Conference provided the opportunity for Mrs MOSLER-TÖRNSTRÖM to address the issues of the relations between national governments and regions. “National governments often take the attitude that all decision-making resides with them, whereas regions are real actors”, said the President of the Congress. Drawing attention to changing role of regions, she referred to the recent Congress report charting the trends and prospects of inter-regional cooperation in Europe. This report proposes some initiatives for deepening bilateral and multilateral cooperation between regions.

At the same time, Mrs MOSLER-TÖRNSTRÖM recalled that the Congress promotes the principle of subsidiarity, to give the local population a say in how they manage their public affairs. “The challenge for us is to ensure that the core principles of democracy are respected, according to the will of the people and with the maximum of political dialogue” she added.

“A certain degree of regional autonomy is an effective way to bring power and the citizen closer together” Gudrun MOSLER-TÖRNSTRÖM concluded, highlighting that an effective citizen participation in the decision-making process – at all the levels of governance – will also enhance its credibility.