Keith Whitmore: “Decentralisation, democracy and development are the perfect foundation for any crisis exit strategies”

27.09.2012, Cadiz (Spain) - “We in the Congress are convinced that the way out of the crisis passes through the requirements of Decentralisation, democracy and development,” declared Keith Whitmore at the 25th General Assembly of the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) in Cadiz, Spain, on 27 September.

He underlined the importance of recognising local and regional authorities as “fully-fledged stakeholders in the economic recovery”. “We have to transform the potential threat of the crisis to our democratic system into an opportunity for change, for improving efficiency, revising relations between different government levels, and increasing direct citizen participation in governance. In other words, the crisis compels us to do better,” he concluded.

The Congress delegation present at the 25th General Assembly of CEMR included also Congress Vice-President Jean-Claude Frecon, Secretary General Andreas Kiefer and the Executive Secretary of the Chamber of Local Authorities, Jean-Philippe Bozouls.

In addition, participants in the CEMR-event were able to learn more about the current edition of the European Local Democracy Week (ELDW) at the Congress’s information stand and in the framework of the Speakers’ Corner.

Speech by Keith Whitmore