Paphos is a good example of a European Capital of culture, European Union Culture Commissioner Tibor Navracsics said on Tuesday morning at the official opening ceremony of the Cultural Capital of Europe and East Asia Forum in Shanghai.
Mayor of Paphos Phedonas Phedonos also addressed the forum on behalf of all the mayors of the European Capitals of Culture.
A spokesman for Paphos municipality said the town was complimented on its approach and implementation of the Cultural Capital title and is being hailed as a good example for future capitals of culture.
“A successful cultural capital is judged according to three main pillars, the cultural programme, the projects and the participation of the local society,” he said.
Phedonos also held a private discussion with the Commissioner within the framework of the forum and that Paphos would be invited to Brussels to present the city’s good example to new capitals of cultures.
At the Shanghai event, the mayor also presented the upgrading projects going on in the town and the impact they have had on the local culture and society. A similar presentation was also made by the chairman of Pafos2017 Christos Patsalides.
The forum is being attended by mayors and delegations from 14 European cities that have previously held the title or have been selected as future Cultural Capitals.
The European Capital of Culture programme was initially called the European City of Culture and was conceived by Melina Mecouri, in 1983. The programme was launched in 1985 and Athens was the first title-holder. In 1999, it was renamed the European Capital of Culture.
The initiative is designed to highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe, celebrate shared cultural features, increase European citizens’ sense of belonging to a common cultural area and foster the contribution of culture to the development of cities.
Experience has shown that the event is also an excellent opportunity for regenerating cities, raising their international profile, enhancing their local image, breathing new life into a city’s culture and boosting tourism.