“Member States must act soon”

11 March 2021

Mayors of European cities have called on the EU member states to act soon and involve local governments in the drafting of the national recovery and resilience plans. These plans will determine how the €750 billion EU Recovery Fund, ‘Next Generation EU’, is spent. Plans have to be submitted until the end of April.

“There is very little time left and we cannot waste it,” said Dario Nardella, Mayor of Florence and president of Eurocities, in an online meeting on Thursday. “Without the involvement of cities and the necessary ratifications by national parliaments, the ‘Next Generation EU’ does not exist.”

Nardella met with other city leaders from Eurocities’ executive committee, the European Parliamentarians Dragos Pislaru, Rapporteur for the Recovery and Resilience Facility, and Jan Olbrycht, President of the Urban Intergroup, and the Head of Cabinet of Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni, Marco Buti.

“During the meeting a very strong concern emerged for the almost complete lack of involvement of local governments and in particular of mayors in the design of the national plans,” Nardella said. “We believe that the European Commission and the Council under the Portuguese Presidency can play the necessary role of persuasion towards national governments.”

Besides Nardella city leaders from Barcelona, Braga, Ghent, Leipzig, Ljubljana, Nantes, Stockholm, and Vienna also participated in the meeting.

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Photo © City of Florence