UCLG actively participated in the European Union (EU) Partnership Forum 2017 held on 6-7 July in Brussels. The forum, organized by the Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development of the European Commission (EC), aimed to strengthen and deepen the Partnerships established with Local Authorities and Civil Society Organizations, so that they can play their full role as actors of governance, advocates and implementers.
The Secretary General of UCLG, Josep Roig, attended and contributed to the event accompanied by Secretaries General and representatives of UCLG Sections and partners, such as UCLG Africa, UCLG ASPAC, UCLG MEWA, FLACMA, CEMR and PLATFORMA, AIMF, CLGF, among others. Our network engaged in exchanges with the EC and partners bringing the local government perspective to the forum's discussions that, among others, addressed topics such as: strengthening local democracy, inclusive local economic development, partnerships on climate change, partnerships on gender equality and women empowerment, and relationships and synergies with Africa, Latin America and Caribbean, and Neighborhood South and Middle East.
The gathering allowed to highlight the key role of local and regional governments in achieving the SDGs and with regards to the new EU Consensus on Development, the recently adopted new framework for development cooperation established for the EU and its member states. It further provided the opportunity to recall the importance of building partnerships for the implementation of the SDGs, as well as of promoting alliances between local authorities and civil society for the localization of the SDGs.
"Implementing the European Development Consensus entails joint actions on local, regional and global level. Civil society organizations and local authorities are the forefront of such actions" Neven Mimica EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development.
Taking advantage of this gathering, UCLG and the other associations of local authorities involved - UCLG Africa, AIMF, CLGF and PLATFORMA-CEMR - met with the EC to review and exchange views on the implementation of the Partnerships signed with the Commission.