The pandemic was the final blow to the Network of Francophone and Francophile Cities of America.
The project, initiated by the mayor of Quebec, Régis Labeaume, with his counterparts from Moncton and Lafayette, is now a thing of the past.
“Due to the pandemic and considering the difficulty of keeping member cities engaged, the City has ended the funding it granted to the Center de la francophonie des Amériques for the operation of the Network of Francophone and Francophile Cities of America. This is therefore the end of the Network as developed over the past few years, ”confirmed Quebec City spokesperson David O’Brien.
The Network aimed to bring together French-speaking towns or cities that have a French-speaking past. One of the objectives was to set up tourist circuits linking the member cities. These circuits were to allow tourists to plan a travel experience to discover French-speaking America.
However, with the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Quebec decided to end the agreement that bound it with the Center de la francophonie. He was mandated to ensure the functioning and development of the Network since 2018. This week, the City’s executive committee confirmed the decision not to renew its financial participation.
“Considering the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and the difficulty of keeping member cities engaged in the Network of Francophone and Francophile Cities of America, the parties agreed, by mutual agreement, that it was difficult to keep the financial commitments in place and that it was necessary to terminate the agreement. This will therefore end on December 31, 2020 ”, writes the decision-making body in a summary published on Friday.
The Center de la Francophonie will take over to “allow cities, more specifically in minority communities, to reclaim their Francophone heritage,” said Mr. O’Brien.
“As for the City of Quebec, it will be able to continue its links with these cities, in particular Moncton and Lafayette, for example through cultural projects that it will carry out with them directly.”