In a joint letter sent yesterday (6 July), PLATFORMA and the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR), together with three associations of local and regional governments from Latin America and the Caribbean, about forty Civil Society Organisations and the European Trade Union Confederation, call on EU leaders and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) to “establish an official space for multi-stakeholder dialogue”. This call for engagement was sent to Council President Michel, HR/VP Borell, Commissioner Urpilainen, Spanish President Sánchez and Belgian PM De Croo, ahead of the third EU-CELAC Summit of Heads of State and Government which will be held in Brussels on 17-18 July 2023.
At the initiative of the EU-LAC Civil Society Working Group, the signatories ask for an official multi-stakeholder follow-up mechanism. “It is therefore our expectation that the joint declaration that will be adopted at the summit will include a paragraph acknowledging civil society, trade unions, local governments and their associations key issues of concern and policy recommendations,” the letter says.
CLGF, FLACMA and Mercociudades are the 3 co-signatories on local and governments’ side, together with PLATFORMA and CEMR.
Ahead of the 3rd EU-CELAC Summit of Heads of State and Government, the European Commission is organising next week (13-14 July) in Brussels the EU – Latin America & the Caribbean (LAC) Forum. This forum’s main goal is to agree on recommendations from the different stakeholders ahead of the EU-CELAC Summit.
During thematic sessions, the discussions will tackle key priority areas for the LAC region and the renewal of the bi-regional partnership: the right to civic space, the respect of human rights and the feminist and youth lens in cooperation, the protection of democracy and local governance, the programming of adapted climate change policies, or the modalities of future agendas for cooperation between both regions, including recommendations in view of the EU’s investment agenda for the region, the so-called Global Gateway.
The EU-CELAC Summit of Heads of State and Government of 17-18 July is a historic occasion to bring together European, Latin American and Caribbean leaders to renew and strengthen relations between the two regions after almost a decade of absence of bi-regional dialogue at the highest political level. The summit will be held under the theme “Renewing the bi-regional partnership to strengthen peace and sustainable development”.
Read the full letter