#CPMR: Taking #Brexit into account and working with EU regions

| October 25, 2017 | 0 Comments

EU Reporter was in attendance at the Conference for Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe (CPMR) general assembly, which took place from 18-20 October in Helsinki, writes James Drew.

One of the event’s key speakers, the Welsh Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government Mark Drakeford (pictured), delivered a rousing speech on what he believed was the CPMR’s best direction to take before and post Brexit.

Speaking to EU Reporter, he said: “We are aiming to keep as many doors open as possible, and ensuring as many links as we can for the post-Brexit future. The Welsh economy has a higher proportion of manufacturing than the rest of the UK, particularly in the automotive and aerospace sectors.

“CPMR therefore matters a great deal – it is a network that unites many parts of Europe, and people in Wales understand that it is not the fact of Brexit but rather the form of Brexit that will be the most important factor in the years ahead.”

And CPMR Secretary General Eleni Marianou was very keen to stress the importance of the “privileged platform” of the CPMR interacting strongly with the EU’s regions. She said: “Our regions, like everyone else these days, are still coping with the consequences of the post-2008 financial crisis, in particular the job losses for their citizens. Many of them have been rather severely hit and they are fully involved in rebuilding a new development model for a rapid emergence from the crisis which secures a long term recovery. They endeavour to do so together with their member states and the EU.

“In addition, the advent of Brexit means that the added value of cohesion policy becomes ever more important. We need to address so many challenges – climate change, terrorism, Brexit, but I am very confident that CPMR will find the way.

“Our Political Bureau has had a long discussion on the EU2020 strategy with Fabrizio Barca, author of the independent report on the future of cohesion policy, where a clear message emerged from our regions which are ready to see the EU focus on a small and strategic number of European issues.  It was also made clear that they firmly oppose any sectoralisation and re-nationalization of cohesion policy. On the contrary, they consider that regional policy is the only solution available today which can deliver the strategy in an efficient and long term fashion through a unique system of governance that has been in operation for the last 20 years.  Cohesion policy is the only EU policy that has reached a high level of horizontal and vertical integration and has brought together the largest share of stakeholders in delivering almost all EU policies on the ground. What’s more, given the very essence of cohesion policy as a development policy for the EU, it should apply to all EU regions.”

For more information, visit the CPMR website.

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Category: A Frontpage, Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe (CPMR), EU, EU, Maritime

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