V4 Discuss ‘Bold Ideas’ With Eastern Partnership Countries
On the eve of the 10th anniversary of the Eastern Partnership, representatives from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine met with the Visegrad Group (Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary) in Bratislava and held “intense and useful” negotiations.
Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Meleșcanu, EU Commissioner for Neighbourhood Policy Johannes Hahn and Secretary General of the European External Action Service (EEAS) Helga Schmid also participated.
“Today, we generated a number of very specific and, in some cases, very bold ideas, which we will continue to think about. I am certain that the European Commission and the EEAS will continue to work on them as well,” Slovakia’s Miroslav Lajčák said, adding that the gathering in Bratislava was preparation for upcoming EU-Eastern Partnership meetings in Brussels.
“There is still a lot of room for improvement. However our aim is not to threaten anybody but to improve relations, living conditions, and to serve people,” Hahn said. (Lucia Yar, EURACTIV.sk)
According to the Czech Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček, the EU should closely cooperate with the Eastern Partnership states, especially in infrastructure. “For the Czech Republic, the Eastern Partnership is one of the foreign political priorities,” Petricek said. (Aneta Zachová, EURACTIV.cz)
Hungarian news agency MTI reported that Hungary’s Peter Szijjarto said a Eurasian free trade area was in the interests of Hungary and Europe as a whole. “It’s clearly in Europe’s interest to develop close cooperation with the most important global economic players,” he said.
Deal on nuclear power? Industry Minister Karel Havlíček has said the Czech Republic should negotiate a deal with the EU on the construction of the new unit of the Dukovany nuclear power station despite being considered in Brussels a “dirty source of energy”.
“We simply cannot build wind farms like they do it in Germany,” Havlicek said.