I am pleased to present to you the "Fourth European Forum on Cohesion" which will be held on 27 and 28 September 2007 in Brussels. The event will be based on the findings and issues of the Fourth Report on Economic and Social Cohesion which the European Commission adopted on 30 May 2007. It will involve over 800 representatives at European, national, regional and local level from all EU Member States, the candidate countries and EU institutions.
Following recent enlargements and in view of the challenges of globalisation, climate change and demography, cohesion policy is of major importance for the debate about Europe's future. Its tangible results have a daily influence on the lives of our citizens. The Fourth Cohesion Forum will ask questions on how the Union's cohesion policy should adapt to new challenges and how its delivery can be improved in order to maximise its impact in the future.
On the occasion of the Cohesion Forum, I will also launch an EU-wide consultation process. A dedicated internet site will collect the contributions of Member States, regions, cities, EU institutions, economic and social partners and civil society organisations. I intend to present the results of this consultation in spring 2008, together with the fifth progress report on economic and social cohesion.
I am convinced that the event will be of high political importance and visibility. I look forward to welcome you and your contributions to the debate.
Commissioner for Regional Policy