Mayor of Leipzig elected new Eurocities President
The Mayor of Leipzig, Burkhard Jung, will represent major European cities in the coming two years, as President of Eurocities. He succeeds the Mayor of Florence, Dario Nordella, and is joined by the Mayor of Ghent, Mathias De Clercq, who will become the network’s Vice President.
Outgoing President of Eurocities, Mayor of Florence, Dario Nordella (left), and the newly elected President of Eurocities, Mayor of Leipzig, Burkhard Jung.
Jung, who was elected by delegates from more than 200 major European cities, wants to strengthen the relationship between cities and the EU and reinforce European democratic values.
He stressed: “Now more than ever, the future of Europe and its prosperity depends on the involvement of local governments and local communities. Cities have been hit particularly hard by global challenges such as the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia’s war in Ukraine. People are dealing with energy poverty and rising inflation, and cities have led emergency efforts to receive Ukrainian refugees.”
Jung calls for EU solidarity at all levels of government and demands that cities are involved in the development of future EU policies. “As momentum builds towards next year’s pivotal European elections, it is crucial that the values of equality and social integration are placed at the heart of political decision making,” he said. “As the drivers of sustainable and fair recovery, cities must have a central role in this decision-making process, leading the way on major challenges such as climate action and migration.”
As President, Jung plans to lead Eurocities and its member cities to achieve objectives like the implementation of European Green Deal initiatives, the digital transformation, social cohesion and providing more affordable housing in cities across Europe. He also wants to increase the involvement of citizens in city decision-making and to strengthen youth involvement in politics.
He concluded: “I would like to thank my fellow mayors for electing me to this important position, and I look forward to creating an even closer-knit network of European member cites to accomplish liveable and future-oriented cities for everyone.”
Delegates to the conference also took part in elections for Eurocities Executive Committee – always represented by politicians from 12 cities, who form the main decision-making body of the organisation.
The new members, which each receive a three-year mandate, are the cities of Athens and Helsinki, while Nantes and Vienna were re-elected. The other member cities of Eurocities Executive Committee are Barcelona, Braga, Ghent, Leipzig, Rotterdam, Oslo, Tallinn and Florence. Meanwhile, the mayors of Stockholm and Warsaw decide to step down from their roles within the group.
In addition, the newly elected chairs of Eurocities political forums are: Culture, Semir Osmanagić from Ljubljana; Economy, Rosa Huertas from Valladolid; Environment, Cathy DeBruyne from Ghent; Knowledge Affairs, Jochem Cooiman from Rotterdam; Mobility, Lola Ortiz Sánchez from Madrid; Social, Joe Brady and Annette Christie from Glasgow.
Eurocities wants to make cities places where everyone can enjoy a good quality of life, is able to move around safely, access quality and inclusive public services and benefit from a healthy environment. We do this by networking almost 200 larger European cities, which together represent some 130 million people across 39 countries, and by gathering evidence of how policy making impacts on people to inspire other cities and EU decision makers.
The Eurocities General Assembly this year took place within the wider setting of the Brussels Urban Summit.