This second edition of the EU annual regional and local Barometer gives EU decision-makers, national governments, regions, cities and stakeholders a clear understanding of what the COVID-19 pandemic means on the ground, and what its consequences are for our communities.
The 2021 Regional Barometer provides an updated overview of a wide range of issues that will determine the success of recovery efforts in our regions and cities: from health to migration, from the Green Deal to the digital transformation, and from economic and social cohesion to strengthening European democracy.
Andreas Kondylis, Mayor of Alimos, and Renew Europe Deputy Coordinator for Social and Cultural Affairs, emphasized the importance of working together for EU recovery:
As this health crisis ends, we feel optimistic for the recovery. This wouldn’t happen, if we weren’t all together. More Europe, with a more active role for cities and regions, is what we stand for. In Greece, we had a crisis over the summer with the fires – local and regional authorities were on the front line and we could count on the help of our European friends and partners. We now want to be on the frontline to develop resilience too – we need more Europe, and more regional governance – this is the only recipe for us to combat this crisis – as the EU Barometer shows.
Ulrika Landergren, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group in the CoR, focusing on the countryside, added:
Throughout 2020, it proved safer to live in the countryside than in a city! Rural areas have the great potential to adapt to changes. But they need a clear vision to grow economically and remain good places to live
The EU Annual Regional and Local Barometer is a report by the European Committee of the Regions based on original studies as well as academic research and contributions from other public sources. It provides a snapshot of the most pressing challenges faced by regions and cities across the Union and helps to inform EU policy choices. It also provides a steer for the European Committee of the Regions as it pursues its political priorities for 2020-25: to bring Europe closer to people, to build resilient communities, and to promote cohesion – placed-based policies – as a fundamental value of the EU.