9th Direct Dialogue between EU capital city mayors and the European Commission
Jan Olbrycht, as President of the URBAN Intergroup, attended the 9th Direct Dialogue between EU capital city mayors and the European Commission on March 18th. Upon the invitation of Jelena Pavičić Vukičević, Acting Mayor of Zagreb, Jan Olbrycht had opportunity to discuss issues linked to the National Recovery Plans and the future of the Urban Agenda for the EU. Jan Olbrycht called on EU Cohesion and Reform Commissioner Elisa Ferreira to look at the consultation process for National Recovery Plans in all member states. He asked to check whether local and regional authorities participated in the consultation process and whether they would be involved in implementing the investment. Moreover, referring to the future of the Urban Agenda, he stressed that the good example of multilevel governance in the Urban Agenda partnerships should be continue in the future.
The Direct Dialogue between EU capital city mayors and the European Commission is an initiative launched in 2013 by former EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, Johannes Hahn, to gather all the mayors of EU capital cities to discuss with EU commission the role that capitals can play in achieving EU objectives.
Online event on the urban dimension of cohesion policy 2021-2027
The last online seminar organised by the URBAN Intergroup on Friday 26 February was dedicated to the Urban dimension of cohesion policy 2021-2027. In her welcoming speech, Fabienne Keller, Vice-President of the URBAN Intergroup, underlined that the European Parliament played a central role in fighting for the urban dimension of cohesion policy.
Jan Olbrycht, President of the URBAN Intergroup, recalled that MEPs were struggling for years to get the urban dimension of different EU policies recognised, as urban issues are cross-sectorial. He stressed that “urban” is only one of the numerous dimensions of European policies.
The core of the seminar was shaped around the presentation given by a representative of the European Commission on the Urban dimension in the legal framework of cohesion policy for 2021-2027. In the Common Provisions Regulation (CPR), this dimension is mentioned explicitly at the level of 3 specific objectives (protection of nature, biodiversity, and green infrastructure, including in urban areas; urban mobility as well as security in urban areas).
The 5th policy objective, “A Europe closer to citizens”, has been specifically mentioned as it refers to sustainable and integrated development of all types of territories and local initiatives.