Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2005-09-27-Speech-2-148"

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"Mr President, Commissioner, ladies and gentlemen, first of all I should like to thank the Commission for the good work it has done, for defining the special nature of the outermost regions better, and for meeting the needs of those areas, which suffer particularly from their geographical location in terms of development and market competitiveness. It is good that increasingly effective measures in support of those regions are being assessed and that a wider neighbourhood action plan is also foreseen in the Marques report, to encourage trade between those regions and their adjacent markets. The wider neighbourhood action plan is a good opportunity both to establish economic, social and cultural links with those countries that host emigrant communities from the outermost regions and to bring down the barriers that limit trading opportunities with the surrounding geographical areas, such as the West Indies, the Americas and Africa. In its communication COM(2004)0343 of 26 May 2004, the Commission set itself two goals: to reduce the difficulties of access to the outermost regions, not just in relation to continental Europe but also from one region to another, and to improve the competitiveness of businesses. This is the goal we must achieve: help them to grow so we can all grow. That, if you like, is also the meaning of the Lisbon Strategy. In the present context, however, efforts must first be directed towards having some certainty on the financial perspective, because only then will we be able to judge whether the funds available to the regions will allow for the fair distribution of resources in line with the requirements that the Commission has outlined. In conclusion, then, I welcome a greater commitment to the outermost regions and a stronger partnership for these regions, so as to enable them to escape from isolation and to make them increasingly competitive on the common market."@en1

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