EPP-CoR members continued to voice their proposals on measures needed to help villages, cities and regions across Europe to overcome the crisis caused by the spread of the pandemic during a Bureau Meeting of the European Committee of the Regions. Members discussed the response of Local and Regional Authorities to the COVID19 pandemic and the political priorities for the CoR 2020-2025 term of office taking into account developments due to the corona virus crisis. The meeting was chaired by Apostolos Tzitzikostas, Governor of Central Macedonia (Greece) and President of the European Committee of the Regions.
Nikola Dobroslavic, Prefect of Dubrovnik-Neretva County talked about the reopening of borders. He said “This is crucial for Dubrovnik and other touristic destinations”.
Michael Murphy, Cathaoirleach of Tipperary County Council and ECON Chair spoke about the economic recovery. “As we enter a new phase, a new set of heroes emerge: SMEs and businesses which are crucial for economic recovery. We need to do more to support SMEs, several of which are family-owned, who invest local, hire local and spend local.”
Ivan Žagar, Mayor of the Municipality of Slovenska Bistrica said that now we need to shift attention to the economic crisis resulting from Covid19. He added that the least developed regions are the hardest hit and thus EU policy instruments should aim to support them insisting that investment in infrastructure was crucial.
Borboly Csaba, President of the Harghita County Council in Romania stressed that education was one of the most disrupted sectors because of the pandemic. “We need to invest more in digital education especially to support students in less developed regions, whose education performance was mostly affected due to the digital divide” he said.