During its Annual Forum, PLATFORMA invites the European Commission to clarify its strategy of collaboration with the local and regional authorities for development cooperation.
PLATFORMA organized their annual forum in Florence, Italy, the 2nd and 3rd of April of 2012, with the participation of a hundred representatives of local and regional authorities, civil society organizations, and the European institutions of more than 20 countries.
United Cities and Local Governments also took part in this forum. Mr. Cézar Busatto, charged with the political coordination and local governance of the city of Porto Alegre (Brazil), participated in the name of UCLG, in the round table dedicated to “Local Democracy and Participative Governance”, where he presented the evolution of the participative budgeting from its start in 1990. Mr. Boubacar Bah, Mayor of District 5, Bamako, emphasized in his intervention the role of the mayors of Mali following the recent coup d’etat, ensuring institutional continuity and responding to the needs of the population.
In the presence of Mr. Angelo Baglio, Director of the Civil Society and Local Authorities Unit of the European Commission, Mr. Pierre Schapira, Deputy Mayor of Paris and PLATFORMA spokesperson, indicated his surprise at the absence of any mention of local and regional authorities (ALR) in the consultation on the civil society in the development paper recently launched by the European Commission. Mr. Carles Llorens i Vila, Director General of Development Cooperation for the region of Catalonia, and spokesman of PLATFORMA, also expressed his disappointment that the LRA are not mentioned in this consultation when, in parallel, the European Commission is proposing the creation of a forum on development policies to follow-up the structured dialogue developed during 2010-2011 with the participation of all actors. The Forum adopted a final declaration in which participants called on the European Commission not to marginalize LRA that have been one of the pillars of the structured dialogue. Also they invited to European Parliament and the Council of the European Union to ensure the continuity the program “non-state actors and local authorities in the development” with a budget increase for period 2014-2020 (from 1.3 billions to 2 billions of Euros).