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Ponta Delgada ,  October 16, 2017

Rui Bettencourt wants young Azoreans involved in the process of defining the Cohesion Policy

The Regional Assistant Secretary of the Presidency for External Relations challenged today young people to contribute to the process of involving Azorean society in defining the future of Cohesion Policy post-2020.

Rui Bettencourt stressed that this collaboration will be "very interesting" because it is precisely young people who, until the end of this century, "will make the Azores” and will be "more involved" in these matters.

The Secretary for External Relations spoke in Ponta Delgada at the meeting of the Azores Youth Council, which was chaired by the Regional Secretary of the Presidency for Parliamentary Affairs, Berto Messias.

In his speech, Rui Bettencourt urged young people to express their opinions and concerns about what they think is fundamental and, above all, about "the factors on which we should we take action in the Azores from 2020." The Regional Directorate for Youth is a partner in this process, either through the councillors participating in today's meeting or through regional youth associations.

"If there is any policy for young people to reflect on, it will be the cohesion policy after 2020. These policies will condition the Azores over the course of the century and shape the Azores with the young people who are about to enter the labour world and start to take action," said Rui Bettencourt. According to him, 2018 will be a "very important" year for Europe as well as for the definition of Cohesion Policy from 2020.

The Regional Secretary provided a short overview on Cohesion Policy and its functioning, outlining what is currently happening in Europe and the Azores. Nonetheless, he alerted to the existence of "some dangers" in Europe.

Rui Bettencourt stressed that the definition of what the Cohesion Policy will be from 2020 onwards  "does not depend solely on our goodwill," but rather on "what is being defined at European level" and on "what we envision for it."

In this regard, he underlined the work that has been developed in the Region, namely the consultation of social partners, political parties and civil society in a process in which "the opinion of young people is very important."

"Our goodwill will be legitimate, stronger and more enlightened if we are able to involve the whole society," said Rui Bettencourt. The government official stressed that this is the vision of the Regional Government. By involving all sectors of society, the legitimacy of the Azorean position will be "stronger" and the Region will have a "clearer" strategy for 2020. Hence, during the negotiation period due to start in Brussels from 2018, we will be able to say "it is not just the Azorean Government that wants the Cohesion Policy to be like this in the Azores, but rather the whole Azorean society."

The Regional Secretary also addressed the "European Citizenship - Europe for the Azoreans 2017/2020" programme. The initiative is being developed with the organisation of activities aimed at different audiences throughout the archipelago. Under the programme, the Government provides the facilities of the Azores Office in Brussels for young people and youth associations whenever they need it.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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