The Government of Galicia defends territorial cohesion with an eye on the next EU budget review at the Committee of the Regions plenary session
— The Galician government contributed to the drafting of two opinions on the review of the EU’s current multiannual financial framework and on the need for an appropriate legislative framework to ensure the sustainability of the food system.
— Fundación Galicia Europa was present at the plenary session assisting the Director General
Brussels, May 25th 2023. The Director General for External and EU Relations, Jesús Gamallo, participated in the plenary session of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) representing Galicia. The agenda of the meeting was marked by the reconstruction of Ukraine, with a conference on the role of local and regional governments in the country’s recovery and reconstruction process; by the promotion of equality, diversity and inclusion, with a debate with Commissioner Helena Dalli; and by the need for local resilience to cope with disasters, with another debate with Commissioner Janez Lenarčič.
Among the six opinions adopted, the one on the mid-term review of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027, which the European Commission will be proposing in the coming days, stands out. Galicia included amendments in the text defending the principle of “no harm to cohesion”, which means that no EU action should hinder the process of economic convergence of the least developed regions.
Jesús Gamallo defined cohesion policy as “the mainstay of the entire European Union. Without its regions and cities, the European project makes no sense, as it is these administrations that make the most investment to implement European legislation”. The Director General therefore called for greater support for the administrations closest to the citizens to carry out their tasks.
“Cohesion policy underpins the whole of the EU, so the administrations closest to the citizen must have more support”
Food sustainability under the spotlight
Galicia’s participation in the plenary session also focused on the area of agriculture, specifically on support for local production. The Xunta took part in an amendment to the opinion calling for an appropriate legislative framework to increase the sustainability of food systems.
Galicia calls for the removal of restrictions in public procurement rules that hinder the contracting of local producers, for example in school canteens. “Forestry and agroforestry systems dedicated to food production not only help the local economy, but are more environmentally friendly than imports and help to care for these areas, preventing forest fires and their abandonment,” said Mr Gamallo.
European Committee of the Regions
The European Committee of the Regions is the consultative assembly in which the local and regional authorities of the European Union are represented. The CoR plenary session meets six times a year. Representing the Autonomous Community of Galicia, the titular member is the President of the Xunta de Galicia, while the position of deputy member is held by the Director General for External and EU Relations.
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