Strasbourg, France 19 October 2021
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41st Session of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe, 26-28 October 2021

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities held its 41st session, from 26 to 28 October 2021, for the first time in person in Strasbourg since the Covid-19 pandemic.

Within the context of the sanitary crisis, the Congress held a debate on the different levers of the "Post-Covid Recovery" with Carlo Monticelli, appointed Governor of the Council of Europe Development Bank, and Ulrik Vestergaard Knudsen, Deputy Secretary General of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The challenges of migration issues were discussed during two debates: "Regions and Diaspora" and "Migration: Continuing Challenges for Cities and Regions", with the participation of Ambassador Drahoslav Štefánek, Special Representative of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe on Migration and Refugees, and Erini Dourou, Congress Rapporteur on Migration Issues.

The Congress adopted the monitoring reports on Albania, Cyprus, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, and Spain as part of its monitoring of the compliance of Council of Europe member states with the European Charter of Local Self-Government.

On the agenda were also debates on “Working conditions of elected representatives in times of hate speech and fake news on the internet”, “Home-sharing platforms: challenges and opportunities for municipalities", "Inter-regional and cross-border co-operation for better territorial integration in Europe” and "Lifelong education for lifelong employment of young generations: a challenge for the regions". In addition, within the framework of the Congress initiative "Rejuvenating Politics", youth delegates presented projects from the field.

Among the personalities invited, in addition to the appointed Governor of the Council of Europe Development Bank and the Deputy Secretary General of the OECD, were the Deputy Minister of the Interior of Albania, Romina Kuko, the Minister of the Interior of Cyprus, Nicos Nouris, the State Secretary responsible for Security Policy of Hungary, Péter Sztáray, the Deputy Minister for Local Self Government of North Macedonia, Zoran Dimitrovski, and the Secretary General for territorial coordination of  Spain Miryam Alvarez Páez .

The ceremony for the 7th edition of the Dosta! - Congress Prize was also held. The prize was awarded to the municipalities of Torres Vedras (Portugal), Argostoli (Greece) and Salford (United Kingdom) for their initiatives aimed at ensuring the inclusion of Roma and Travelers.

  • Agenda and documents: webpage of the 41st Session
  • Live webcast (as from 26 October 2021 10h00 CET – the link will be available on the Session webpage)
  • Interpretation: English, French, Italian, German, Russian and Turkish
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Rejuvenating politics: grassroots projects that made young people's voices heard in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic

41stSession 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

At the 41st Session of the Congress, on 26 October 2021, the youth delegates presented to the members of the Congress the results of the numerous projects they had carried out in 2020 and 2021 despite the pandemic. As part of the "Rejuvenating politics" initiative of the Congress and on the basis...

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Lifelong education to ensure lifelong employment for young generations, a priority for regions emerging from the health crisis

41stSession 29 October 2021 Strasbourg, Frnace

On 27 October 2021, the Chamber of Regions held a debate on further vocational training to underpin regional education policies geared to aligning young people's skills and the needs of the labour market. The participants discussed how regions were striving to ensure that there was further...

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Alberto Nunez Feijoo: Diasporas are a cultural, economic and demographic asset for their regions of origin

41stSession 29 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Formed in the course of history, diasporas of citizens originating from the same region who went to live in another country are a cultural, economic and demographic asset for their regions of origin. For that very reason, some regions have chosen to strengthen links with their former inhabitants...

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Albania: substantial progress made, but responsibilities between central and local levels need to be clearly divided

41st Session 28 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Albania has achieved substantial decentralisation progress, but more efforts, particularly in clarifying responsibilities between central and local authorities, need to be made, concludes a report approved by the Council of Europe’s Congress of Local and Regional Authorities today. The report and...

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How to preserve local democracy in the face of fakes news and hate speech?

41st Session 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated and made even more virulent the impact of fake news and hate speech, which spread at lightning speed on the Internet and social networks. But beyond the general observation, the damage of these phenomena is particularly worrying for local political life. ...

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Congress held debates on local self-government in Cyprus and North Macedonia, as well as on Covid-19 recovery, hate speech and fake news, territorial integration, youth opportunities, diaspora relations, and Roma integration

27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

On the second day of the 41st Session, Wednesday 27 October 2021, the Congress adopted reports on local self-government in Cyprus and North Macedonia. The report on Cyprus was presented by Gunn Marit Helgesen (Norway, EPP/CCE) and Marc Cools (Belgium, ILDG). The debate was followed by an exchange...

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Broadening the scope of cross-border co-operation and keeping borders open

41st Session 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

The sudden closure of borders between European countries decided in spring 2020, almost unthinkable prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, has had far-reaching consequences in human and economic terms for the inhabitants of border regions, which constitute one in every three European regions. During a...

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Municipalities from Portugal, Greece and the United Kingdom win the Dosta! Prize for initiatives aimed at integration of Roma and Travellers

41stSession 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Today, the municipalities of Torres Vedras in Portugal, Argostoli in Greece and Salford in the United Kingdom were awarded the Dosta! Prize by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe during its 41st Session, for their initiatives promoting the integration of Roma...

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Post-Covid recovery strategies must be adapted to the reality of cities and regions

41st Session 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

On 27 October 2021, during its 41st session, the Council of Europe Congress of Local and Regional Authorities debated “Covid: the road to recovery?”. The debate tackled pressing issues at stake in European cities and regions: how can societies recover from the crisis as the health situation...

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Fake news and hate speech against elected representatives: Congress responds with a project to devise effective responses

41st Session 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Local and regional elected representatives throughout Europe have been faced with the rise of fake news and hate speech in recent years, particularly on the Internet and social networks. What responses and what tools should be developed to tackle this challenge? This is the backdrop for a...

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Cyprus: too little progress in promoting local democracy, says new report from Congress

41stSession 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Today the Council of Europe’s Congress of Local and Regional Authorities adopted a report on Cyprus application of the European Charter of Local Self-Government and concluding that shortcomings persists since its previous report in 2016. The principle of self-government remains unrecognised,...

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North Macedonia: decentralisation advances, but more clarity on division of competences, adequate financial resources needed

41stSession 27 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Political commitment to decentralisation is observed in North Macedonia, but more clarity in law and practice is needed to further improve the decentralisation reform in the country, says a recommendation adopted today by the Council of Europe’s Congress of Local and Regional Authorities. The...

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Congress to hold debates on local self-government in Spain and the Netherlands, as well as on migration, home sharing platforms and youth delegates' projects

41stSession 26 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

In his communication at the opening of the 41st session, on 26 October 2021, the President of the Congress Leendert Verbeek reiterated the importance of the European Charter of Local Self‑Government as an unparalleled international treaty that is one of a kind worldwide and bears witness to the...

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Congress concerned about the appointment procedure of Mayors and King’s Commissioners in the Netherlands

41stSession 26 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

In a monitoring report on the implementation of the European Charter on of Local Self-Government published today, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities expresses particular concerns over the appointment procedure of Mayors and King’s Commissioners, which has not been changed in the...

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Decentralisation is a cornerstone of Spanish democracy, but local authorities suffer from insufficient funding and an unclear division of responsibilities

41st Session 26 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

Spain is generally fulfilling its obligations under the European Charter of Local Self-Government, and decentralisation is at the core of Spanish democracy. However, some issues need to be addressed, notably the insufficient funding of the local municipalities and the lack of clarity in the...

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Migration: Developing long term solutions with local and regional authorities

41st Session 26 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

The Congress examined the challenges posed by migration for cities and regions in a debate held on 26 October 2021 during the 41st Session, in Strasbourg, France, with the participation of Ambassador Drahoslav Štefánek, Special Representative of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe on...

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Collaborative accommodation economy - the Congress calls to give more power to local and regional authorities

41st Session 26 October 2021 Strasbourg, France

The Congress meeting in Strasbourg this week adopted the report on “Home sharing platforms: challenges and opportunities for municipalities” on 26 October 2021. The report deals with pressing issues in European cities: tourism, housing, and digitalisation. It includes an in-depth analysis of the...

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ELECTIONS ELECTIONS

The Chamber of Local Authorities elected two Vice-Presidents

 Results of the election

 Compendium of candidatures

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ENTRY CONDITIONS AND SANITARY MEASURES

Members of Congress and participants are invited to consult the information note on entry conditions and sanitary measures.

Information note

Contacts Contacts
Table Office
Dolores Ríos Turón
+33 (0)3 88 41 34 51
congress.session@coe.int 

Institutional Communication Unit
Saïda Théophile
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