Speech – Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović – Council of the European Union

Brief intervention by Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, Secretary General of EUROPA NOSTRA
at the COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION (Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council meeting)

Brussels, 23 May 2017.

Mr President of the Council,

Ministers,

Vice-President Mogherini,

Commissioner Navracsics,

Europa Nostra congratulates the Maltese Presidency and the Council on the important conclusions which you have just adopted.

For us, the Key words of this strategy are: cross-cutting approach & complementarity of action. We urge you to implement this strategy with audacity and imagination, both in EU’s bilateral and multilateral external relations.

As a civil society movement, we welcome the emphasis which your new strategy places on bottom-up approach, recognising the key role of civil society and enabling their vital contribution.

Together with our large European Heritage Alliance 3.3, we welcome the specific mention of cultural heritage as one of the three pillars of the EU’s international cultural relations. But we also wish to point out that heritage is a pivotal resource also for the two other key objectives, namely promoting sustainable development and intercultural dialogue.

As a proud partner of the EU for our annual EU Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards, we encourage you to promote Europe’s outstanding heritage skills and best practices, also in the framework of EU’s external relations.

As a pan-European network covering all countries of the Council of Europe, including Western Balkans, Russia & Turkey, we urge you to put culture & cultural heritage much higher on the list of priorities in EU’s neighbourhood and enlargement policy.

Last but not least, together with our President, Maestro Plácido Domingo, we urge you to make full use of the European Year of Cultural Heritage in 2018, also for the benefit of EU’s external relations.

Excellencies,

Europa Nostra stands ready to be your civil society partner in developing an ambitious and effective strategy of EU’s international cultural relations.

Thank you.

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