Keeping Med Sea at top of European agenda is Malta’s commitment, Foreign Affairs Minister

Last Updated on Thursday, 14 September, 2023 at 8:28 am by Andre Camilleri

“Malta’s commitment remains that of keeping the Mediterranean at the top of the European Agenda.” This was stated by Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade Ian Borg during a press conference that brought to an end the meeting of the Ministers and Secretaries of State for European Union Affairs of the MED9 Group, which was held in preparation for the Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the same Group, which will be convened in our country on 29 September 2023.

Minister Ian Borg started his intervention by expressing Malta’s solidarity and condolences towards Libya and Morocco, in light of the natural disasters that have occurred in recent days. He reiterated Malta’s unceasing commitment to assist and support our neighbouring Mediterranean countries during these challenging times, whilst also making reference to the immediate aid that our country sent to Libya.

During this conference, Minister Borg emphasised the importance of more cooperation between the members of the Group, in order to address regional challenges and opportunities on a European level. He stressed that while the Mediterranean region is rich in history and culture, it presents several challenges that require collective efforts, as well as opportunities that the Mediterranean countries and the rest of the European Union can benefit from, if they work collectively.

“The role of the MED9 Group is to work together to address common challenges and to advance common region interests within the European Union. We all agree on the need for more holistic and structured dialogue with the countries of the Southern Neighbourhood, and that there are many benefits which can be obtained from strategic partnerships with these countries,” said Minister Borg. In this context, he also emphasised Malta’s commitment to continue exploring renewable energy opportunities, promote economic diversification, and sustainable growth, which can lead to mutual benefits, including that these countries also benefit from sustainable social and economic development.

The issue of irregular migration, a recurrent topic on the agenda of the European Union, was also addressed during the conference. Minister Borg stressed the importance of cooperation and holistic solutions, including economic and sustainable development, in order to address the challenges of migration effectively. He emphasised the significance of adequate financing of the European Union to support these efforts, especially in light of the current discussion on the review of the European Union Budget 2021-2027.

Minister Borg reiterated Malta’s commitment to strengthen collaboration within the MED9 Group to ensure that the voice of the Mediterranean continues to be delivered in an effective and coordinated manner in the discussions held in the European institutions.

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