On 25-26 March, the fifth Plenary of the Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE) focused on a first discussion of proposals based on the citizen’s recommendations made during the national and European citizen’s panels, as well as on the ideas submitted on the multilingual digital platform.
In the working group on Education, Culture, Youth and Sport and working with Renew Europe Group's Laurence Farreng MEP (MoDem, FR) François Decoster, President of Renew Europe at the Committee of Regions said:
“European identity requires to take account realities on the ground; we suggest to extend the Erasmus programme to local authority politicians so they see the reality on the ground in other countries. We also talked about multilingualism but there’s a bit of a paradox: we put forward the idea of everything in English so we can better communicate but linguistic diversity is a strength to the European identity.”
In her answer, Farreng highlighted the importance of cross-border regions and agreed with Decoster that multiculturalism and multilingualism are key to a European identity, therefore English cannot be used as the norm.
On the discussion on Migration, Clotilde Armand, (USR-PLUS, RO) and Mayor of Bucharest Sector 1 said:
“Two of the most important recommendations from the citizen’s panels are 1) that the EU should work on the root causes of migration in the countries of origin and 2) the EU should encourage migration of skilled workers where the EU market needs skilled workers and I want to stress the contradiction between both and promote a fair treatment between the countries of origin. If the EU deprives countries of their skilled workers by recruiting these valuable resources for free, it will basically destroys the chances of these countries to close the economic gap.”
Find out more on ALDE Party's participation at the CoFoE here.