Delegations from two Four Motors for Europe regions met during Baden-Wurttemberg’s two-day trip to Milan from November 15 to 16.The trip to Lombardy was the third and final trip in Baden-Wurttemberg's presidential year. Lead by State Secretary Florian Hassler, delegations from Baden-Wurttemberg have already visited the other partner regions Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Catalonia this year. The head of the Lombardy delegation, the President of the Region Attilio Fontana, highlighted that the cooperation between the four regions represents true excellence in terms of economic development, research and innovation, training, and sustainability.
The exchange focused primarily on the two regions' cooperation in the transformation of the economy and industry. As part of the Four Motors for Europe partnership, the regions are already cooperating heavily in this area by launching joint projects in the fields of digitalization and decarbonization. Both sides agreed that common interests can be brought forward in Brussels more efficiently via the Four Motors for Europe network. It was also discussed that EU funding and cohesion policy must take greater account of the transformation and economically strong regions in order to be able to compete globally.
As part of the trip, the Baden-Wurttemberg delegation also met with representatives of the UniCredit Bank on the topic of sustainable financial investments. They also visited the MADE Competence Center 4.0, a training center for technology transfer projects that fits in with the key theme of Baden-Wurttemberg's presidency, “transformation". The MADE Competence Center is cooperating with institutions in Baden-Wurttemberg such as Fraunhofer IPA, Stuttgart University and ARENA2036 within the European project “AI matters”, a network of experimentation facilities for AI in manufacturing.
The trip to Milan also entailed a meeting between Parliamentarians from both regions, strengthening the exchange on the parliamentary level within the Four Motors for Europe network.
In addition, the meeting between the two regions offered the opportunity to announce the handover ceremony in April when the Lombardy Region will assume the Presidency of the Association. Some key elements of the Program have been anticipated; it will relaunch new themes but in the name of continuity with the current Presidency of Baden-Wurttemberg.