1. We, the representatives of European and Arab cities, associations of local authorities, international Institutions and non-governmental organizations, meeting in Dubai (U.A.E.) on 10 -11 February 2008 for the Euro-Arab Cities Forum – "New dialogue for development”, welcome the high-level participation at the Forum and confirm our determination to pursue our dialogue as the basis for a more peaceful world with a strong local self – government. We recall that this Forum is organised in the context of an initiative which began with the First Euro-Arab towns Conference, held in Marrakech in October 1988, and continued with the Conference in Valencia in September 1994.
2. We reaffirm our commitment to promote and develop Euro-Arab municipal cooperation and dialogue around the following themes, on a number of vital issues on which the Forum has focused, in particular:
- Local governance
- Public transport and city planning
- Innovation and exchange of best practices
- Environment and water
- Financial instruments to support partnership projects
- Culture, heritage and tourism
These sessions have been attended by Mayors and experts of European and Arab cities and the following recommendations have been agreed upon:
The Forum is of the utmost importance for aiming to the development of our communities and adopting best practices and expertise, as well as providing assistance and support for upgrading standards of good local governance, life and services to our citizens. Such fora should be further held in the future.
b) We consider that this Forum held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is a platform for improving partnership relations among European and Arab cities. It should be convened periodically every three years in an Arab and European city alternatively.
c) The Forum recognizes the necessity of exerting further efforts for conserving the environment and realizing balance between the economic social and environmental dimension, taking into account other issues indispensable for sustainable development of our cities.
d) The Forum recognizes the necessity of finding integrated solutions for public transportation and of exchanging experiences and projects in the field of the urban planning.
e) We perceive the necessity of cooperation among our cities for finding financial resources for projects development, in the field of infrastructures, public transportation services, housing, clean water resources, waste treatment, environmental protection, cultural heritage, tourism, etc
3. We will work closely together to identify the means and structures to deepen our partnership in the pursuit of these objectives.
4. Convinced of the mutual interest of cooperation in these areas, we undertake to promote and develop activities in our territories (exchanges, studies, conferences) to achieve a common vision, which is a necessary condition for a stable and peaceful world and a greater socio-economic balance, within which the millennium goals can be achieved, with mutual respect for our cultural, political and religious diversity.
5. To this end, a Steering Committee will be set up, which will be tasked with implementing the Forum recommendations and preparing the next Forum, to be held in a European city in 2011.
The Committee shall be composed of:
Congress of the Council of Europe, Coppem, CEMR, the Arab Towns Organization, the last organizer city and the new hosting city.
The committee will undertake the following duties:
Following up the execution of Dubai Declaration recommendations.
Coordinating between the Arab and European cities for facilitating the operation of exchanging expertise and practices.
Coordinating with the European and Arab side for organizing the next Euro-Arab Cities Forum.
Organizing meetings between the Euro-Arab cities and encouraging partnership among cities, holding workshops and training courses.
Taking part in the international and regional forums of cities.
All the decisions shall be taken unanimously.
6. We express our thanks and appreciation to City of Dubai and the United Arab Emirates for hosting this Euro-Arab forum, and for their continuous support for such meetings aimed at developing the communities all over the world.
Moreover, we express our thanks to the following organizations and institutions which contributed in arranging this event in Dubai: Arab Towns Organization - ATO; Euro Mediterranean Partnership of Local and Regional Authorities - COPPEM; Arab Institute for Urban Development - AUDI; Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe; Council of European Municipalities and Regions; and every party that contributed in making this event a successful one.