Fighting climate changes begins with our regions. This is why we launched a structural assistance instrument for coal regions and those that use coal intensively - in order to support the modernisation of their economies and to manage the social impact of the transition to an economy with low carbon emissions. We are talking here about people's health, their jobs and opportunities for the future. That is why we have already started working with regions in seven member states and mobilizing EU programs to meet this important objective. Moreover, we are discussing this initiative with our international partners at the COP24 meeting in Katowice to expand it globally, said Vice-President of the European Commission Maros Sefcovic.
In his turn, European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Canete stated that the Platform for coal regions in transition was launched to help them manage the economic and social transformation resulting from cutting down use of coal.
He was pleased with the fact that many of the interested parties and governmental representatives from the regions using coal intensively will attend the next meeting of the Platform, which will take place in November to the benefit of all the regions going through this energy transition process.
Corina Cretu underscored that the cohesion policy makes significant investments in increasing jobs in the coal regions.
"The EU committed not to let behind anybody and no region in the transition process toward a law carbon emissions economy. The Cohesion policy makes significant investments in promoting growth and job creation in coal regions by giving them support for identifying, developing and investing in those areas in which they can become competitive - what we call 'smart specialisation'," Corina Cretu stated.
Minister-President of Brandenburg (Germany) Dietmar Woidke, Poland's deputy Energy Minister Tomasz Dabrowski, member in the Regional Council of the Silesian Voivodeship (Poland) Malgorzata Ocheduszko-Ludwik, State Secretary with the Ministry of European Funds (Romania) Octav Dan Paxino, State Secretary with the Ministry of Economy (Slovakia) Vojtech Ferencz and Deputy Minister for Regional Development (the Czech Republic) David Koppitz will be the main speakers at the high level conference. The event will review the activity of the Platform for coal regions in transition.