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The Africa-Europe Local and Regional Government Forum held its first edition on the eve of the 5th AU-EU Summit. Initiated by the United Cities and Local Governments Africa, the Council of European Municipalities and Regions and PLATFORMA – the European voice of local and regional governments for development – with support from the EU and AU, 150 leaders of local and regional governments from both continents gathered together in Abidjan on 27 November 2017. Their goal: to share messages and for the first time put a local government perspective on the agenda of the AU-EU Summit.

The conclusions of the economic and social stakeholders' meeting are summarised in a declaration addressing the main issues and outlining proposals.

The forum addressed issues of local economic development, youth empowerment, migration, human mobility and climate action. The debate stressed the role played by sub-national governments to promote inclusive and sustainable development, with emphasis placed on the fact that global challenges, as well as the success of European and African countries, depend on action at the local level. The forum contributes to the 5th AU-EU Summit with concrete proposals about how to make local and regional governments part of the Joint Africa-EU-Strategy.

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