The EU must strengthen the role of the regions in decision-making

EFA organized with our member party in Transylvania Erdélyi Magyar Szövetség (EMSZ) a conference to build strategies to empower European regions

The EU is much more than 27 states. Each state is plural and diverse and has different nations, regions, cultures, languages, and minorities. Communities in Europe are sometimes divided by its internal borders. Acknowledging this diversity and incorporating the voices of the people not correctly represented by their states is imperative in the EU, a political project that is well known for its deeply rooted democratic values.

European regions should play a stronger role in the decision-making of the EU. With this goal and the 2024 European elections in mind, EFA organized this week a conference in Transylvania, together with our member party Erdélyi Magyar Szövetség (EMSZ), the party representing the Hungarian minority in the region.

The event was held in Csíkszereda (Miercurea Ciuc), on 16 and 17 July. It was a great opportunity for EFA  to meet EMSZ representatives and members and explain the opportunities that our collaboration can provide at a European level. EFA President Lorena López de Lacalle, and EFA Political and Public Affairs advisor Paul Butcher took part in the different panels of the event, next to EMSZ main representatives such as the President of EMSZ Zoltán Zakariás or EFA Vice-President and EMSZ Head of Foreign Affairs Zsolt Szilágyi.

The first panel focused on the autonomy of regions and local governance and highlighted the main differences between the EU and Romania. The second panel tackled the practice and experience of local governance from a minority perspective. Finally, the last session was dedicated to preparing for the European elections that will take place on June 2024. Furthermore, a meeting between the EFA delegation and the EMSZ governing body (National Council of Self-Government) was key to strengthening our future collaboration.