12 February 2020
Vasco Cordeiro’s election means all regions and cities matter

Vasco Cordeiro’s election means all regions and cities matter



Vasco Alves Cordeiro, President of the Regional Government of Azores (Portugal) and our candidate to the Presidency of the European Committee of the Regions, was elected today as the first vice-president of the institution. In two years and a half, he will take over the presidency. Azores is region in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean made of nine islands, with 245,000 inhabitants.


Candidacy speech of Vasco Alves Cordeiro


Mr. President,

Members of the European Committee of the Regions, 

We are at the beginning of a new mandate. That is why I stand before you, not only in the name of my region – the Azores – but also in the name of the future. I stand before you in the name of Europe. I stand before you in the name of the future of Europe.

A future that holds great opportunities. Opportunities that, today – like in the past – can make a difference in improving the life of our fellow citizens if we seize them. A future in which the European Union must not only be a presence, but it must also drive us forward, it must be the engine, it must be the leader of its own achievements and global avail. And in that future and in the exciting work to grasp that future, all regions and cities matter. All regions and cities have a say. All regions and cities have an active role to play, regardless of their distance from Brussels, their size or their wealth.

I can guarantee my commitment to work with all the members of the Committee of the Regions; I can guarantee my commitment with the work, ideals and goals, of the Committee of the Regions. Regions know what the EU needs to help boost its potential, for more and better jobs, greater social and environmental protection and the international role of Europe in the world. Regions and municipalities can help achieve the EU goal of not leaving anyone behind.

This assembly is our voice.

That is why our institution must continue to bind itself more closely to the other European institutions and anchor itself more deeply in every municipality, in every city and every region in Europe. We can have a unique role within the EU institutional framework. A role that I would like to see strengthened in order to give representatives of the regional and local level the role that is demanded by the current circumstances.

The new cycle that started with the European elections is a very challenging one:  the MFF negotiations, the Green Deal, the Conference on the Future of Europe are challenges and opportunities that cannot be missed. I am convinced that the European Committee of the Regions must lead in proposing solutions and building the necessary and ambitious compromises with all its members to achieve clear, effective and transparent positions.

My commitment is to work with all: with the President and all the members the Political Bureau, with all political families to further extend the reach and impact of our action.

In this assembly, we share the same values and the same belief, the future of our European Union lies in our villages, cities and regions. They are a fundamental pillar of the democratic life of the European Union. The Member States and the European institutions should not be the only ones writing the future of the Union from the European Quarter. They need us to achieve this goal because we are also elected by the European citizens. But we must still fight, at every stage and in every political domain for them to fully realise.

This is essential because I am convinced that the Union needs to work in a new way. To include the force of action and the suggestions of all the locally elected officials who – like the rest of us here – want to bring the Union closer to the people.

My dear colleagues,

You will be able to count on me to listen and collaborate in every single aspect.

Thank you.


Vasco Alves Cordeiro



Listen to the interview of Vasco Cordeiro on FEPS Talks Episode #18