MEP Marlene Mizzi´s proposals to transform the peripheral and cross-border regions from less disadvantaged areas into regions of prosperity, jobs and growth creation, were approved anonymously by the Culture and Education Committee in the European Parliament.
MEP Mizzi, in her capacity as spokesperson on the CULT opinion on boosting growth and cohesion in EU border regions, commented shortly after the vote: “I am overwhelmed by the support of my colleagues and of the different political groups on such an important matter that shall impact the lives of many European citizens living in cross-border regions.”
In her proposals Marlene Mizzi explained clearly that one must try to harvest the full potential of all cross-border regions, with the inclusion of smaller Member States and in particular states that are divided by sea borders, such as Malta. MEP Mizzi said: ”Both land and sea borders in Europe are important, and the Commission needs to take into account and examine the challenges faced not only by land but by border-sea regions as well.”
Furthermore, MEP Mizzi said that “developing the cultural identity and the European culture should also mean increasing investment in artists and cultural professions. They are both invaluable to promote Europe’s culture, to have added social progress and to see the development of culture across all levels.”
Mizzi also argued in favour of programmes promoting the inclusion of cultural diversity, which would benefit youths and students. It is for this reason that MEP Mizzi stressed on the need to have cross-border educational programmes of exchange amongst students from an early age. This mitigates sociocultural difficulties, brings together students from across all cultures, and facilitates cross-border partnerships.
“European cohesion funds must be used for the good of the citizen in the most transparent manner, so as to ensure fair distribution amongst all projects related to culture, education, youth and sport,” said Marlene Mizzi.