Welcome by the Mayoress of Carreño

As Mayoress of Carreño I am especially proud to welcome to our municipality the more than 300 representatives who will attend the fourth gathering of the European Rural Parliament, which will be held in Candás on November 6-9, 2019. The seaside village of Candás, capital of the rural municipality of Carreño, in this wonderful region, Asturias, gives you its most affectionate welcome.

By choosing Candás to hold this gathering, the European Rural Parliament is starring in several novelties: it is the first time which is going to be held in Spain; moreover, it is the first timeit has been held in a Southern European country. But it is also the first time it will be held in a fishing port, in a town that has experience in the development of Participatory Development Strategies as a rural area, but also as a coastal area. We are now making our experiences available to this Rural Parliament.

In reviewing the contents of the different workshops that are going to take place during this gathering, I can only reflect on the great challenges that are being facing by rural population, and European society in general: the relationship with the urban and industrial areas, digitalisation in the economy and in social relations, the fight against poverty and exclusion, climate change, the reception of immigrants who come to Europe looking for a better life and the support for the values of tolerance and democracy. All of them are exciting topics that will undoubtedly have a place in the debates of this Rural Parliament.

As a villager who I am, born, raised and neighbour of a small rural community in this municipality of Carreño, I am fully convinced that this European rural setting can be a magnificent laboratory of solutions to the great challenges facing European society. The same rural society that, has been the creator of Culture and the humanized Landscape that we have all inherited: undoubtedly has much to contribute to the Future of Europe. Let us give it the opportunity to develop and express itself.

I am confident that this gathering will be produce a Declaration setting out the responses that European rural agents are proposing to the challenges facing Europe, a document that will also serve to bear the name of our village, Candás, throughout our continent.

On behalf of the Candás and Carreño neighborhood of, finally, I would like to thank to the European Rural Parliament, to the three pan-European Networks behind this initiative (European Rural Community Alliance – ERCA, Partnership for Rural Europe -PREPARE; and European LEADER Association for Rural Development -ELARD), and to the Asturian Network of Rural Development – READER for having chosen us to host this magnificent meeting. I am sure we will not disappoint you.

Amelia Fernández López

Mayoress of Carreño