Budweis (CZ), 5 October 2001
Mrs Liese Prokop, Vice-Minister President of Niederösterreich (A) and AER President, met today in Budweis (CZ) the 14 new Czech regions, results from the administrative reform of the country that came into effect on January 1st, 2001. Mrs Prokop’s wish was to meet the new representatives of all these regions in order to win them over to the AER’s cause.
“The Enlargement process of the European Union gives the regions an opportunity to put to the test the model promoted by the AER and to reinforce their political role in Europe. Within the context of the “After-Nice” process and the debate on the future of Europe, the AER, and with it the regions in Europe, draw the attention to the fact that a proper distribution of responsibilities as well as a clear and equitable separation of powers with well-adapted decision and control mechanisms are necessary in order to avoid centralization at European level”, Mrs. Prokop said.
“Now, more than ever, the time for Regions and States has come to convince the European citizens that in the long run only a federal structure can serve as a stable base for further developments of the Union. As regional leaders we have to persuade our populations that regionalism in its federal form is an efficient way to prevent the development of Europe with all power centralized in Brussels. Our way of seeing the rights of democratic participation and decision leaves the necessary margin for autonomous and independent territorial entities, which we cannot imagine functioning without self-responsibility, subsidiarity and competition” Mrs Prokop added in Budweis.
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