Youth Forum in four languages - Regional Leaders Conference for Partner Regions

Québec, March 7, 2006 ─ The Premier of Québec, Jean Charest, is pleased to announce the creation of the Partner Regions' Internet site and the launch of an on-line discussion forum in four languages for young people under 35 years of age.

"As international issues increasingly call upon young people to get involved, it was vital to give them a tool for discussing problems of concern to them. Whether they live in the Partner Regions or anywhere in the world, young people can join the forum for thought-provoking discussion and debate. We are pleased that Jacques Dufresne, a well-known Québec philosopher, has agreed to host the Forum," underscored the Premier.

The Internet site project, and especially the multilingual discussion forum, is the outcome of efforts by young people from Bavaria, the Western Cape, Upper Austria, Québec and Sandong, gathered at the 2nd Conference on the theme of Youth: Developing a Culture of Succession, which took place in Québec City in December 2004. In light of the recommendations made by youth participants, the Regional Leaders present agreed to encourage their participation in democratic institutions.

More specifically, the idea of creating a discussion forum meets a commitment by the Regional Leaders in the Partner Regions to work together on developing networks for young people through a virtual communication tool that would enable them to share their knowledge and express their opinion on issues and current events of likely interest to them, such as globalization and the environment.

For Jacques Dufresne, founder of the Encyclopédie Agora, a work centred on sustainable development, "discussion forums like the Partner Regions' Internet site are key to the new world governance. Without such governance, it will be impossible to meet the major challenges of the future."

The Conference of Regional Leaders of the Partner Regions is an innovative coalition designed to meet the many challenges facing the regional and federated entities that participate in it. Upper Austria, Bavaria, California and the Western Cape, Sandong, Sao Paulo and Québec meet from time to time to discuss the challenges they face. These federated states also share their analyses in searching for common areas of partnership. The spirit of these conferences is decidedly geared to cooperation and action on creating a sustainable development policy for future generations.

The next Conference will be held in Linz, Upper Austria, on July 11 and 12, 2006.

The Internet site is at the following address: (

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Information : 418 649-2400 poste 57861

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