Regional Policy Commissioner Danuta Hübner addressed the “European Urban Day” conference in Prague on February 6, 2009 . The event, backed by the Czech Presidency of the European Union, is an opportunity to evaluate the urban dimension of the EU’s Cohesion Policy, which provides €30 billion in support for European cities to invest in innovation, competitiveness and sustainable development. Ahead of the event, Commissioner Hübner stated: “Investment from the European Union’s Cohesion Policy is crucial for boosting economic growth and job creation in cities. The urban dimension is especially important in the current downturn because the polices developed by cities have consequences for surrounding areas, the region and often the entire Member State. Cities need to be encouraged to take the lead in this process of making the Union more competitive, more innovative and more ecologically and economically sustainable.” The conference will focus on the impact of the expanded urban development programmes supported by the Cohesion Policy in 2007-13. Around 10% of total allocations under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), i.e. €30 billion across the EU, is targeted at specific measures to promote urban development, including better infrastructure (housing, schools, hospitals, telecommunications, and transport); support for small and medium enterprises; urban regeneration for job creation; restoration of historic city centres; and initiatives to enhance energy efficiency and environmental protection.