Mark Drakeford will today visit Noord-Holland to sign a Declaration of Friendship and Solidarity with the Netherlands’ most economically important province.
Professor Drakeford will meet with the Noord-Holland Regional Minister for European Affairs, Cees Loggen and together they will sign the declaration which expresses a desire to uphold strong solidarity and friendship between Wales and Noord-Holland, and a commitment to work together on areas of mutual interest following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
He will then hold talks with Mr Loggen and the King’s Commissioner for Noord-Holland, Mr. Johan Remkes, who is the official representative of central government in the Dutch provinces.
The Declaration of Friendship and Solidarity was developed in the context of the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions’ (CPMR) Cardiff Declaration which was signed by over 20 EU regional and local authority leaders last November, and sets out priorities for future co-operation between EU regions after Brexit.
Mr Drakeford will also visit a coastal defence project in the area and meet with Mr Luc Kohsiek, President of Noord-Holland’s Water Board to discuss Noord-Holland’s approach to water management and coastal flood prevention.
The Cabinet Secretary will end his trip by visiting the 3D Print Canal House - a 3-year ‘Research & Design by Doing’ project which involves an international team of partners from various sectors working together on 3D printing a full-size canal house in Amsterdam.
The Finance Secretary said:
“The Declaration of Friendship and Solidarity with Noord-Holland underlines our desire to grow our bilateral relationship with the province, and supports our wider efforts to strengthen relationships with European regions beyond Brexit.
“Noord-Holland is arguably the most economically important of Holland’s provinces and this visit provides an opportunity to share ideas of mutual interest particularly in relation to infrastructure and collaborative research and innovation projects.”
Noord-Holland’s Regional Minister for European Affairs, Cees Loggen said:
“there is a need for continued exchange, cooperation and learning between the people of the UK and the EU. I hope that many regions in the UK and EU will follow the example that Wales and Noord-Holland have and will co-sign the declaration.”