Minister Cerar hosts Luxembourg Foreign Minister Asselborn
Minister Dr Miro Cerar hosted Minister of Foreign and European Affairs and Minister of Immigration and Asylum of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg Jean Asselborn on an official visit to Slovenia today. The counterparts confirmed excellent bilateral relations between the two countries, based on common European values, the rule of law and similar views on current European and global issues.
They expressed satisfaction with further strengthening of cooperation between the two countries, and between Slovenia and the Benelux countries, especially in European affairs and the economy. This cooperation will continue, including through the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2021. Both countries are part of the EU’s most closely integrated core and NATO allies, sharing similar views on current European and international issues.
Both countries are committed to the principles of multilateralism within the EU, across the continent, and worldwide. Complex issues can only be addressed together, while respecting international law, court decisions and agreed-upon rules.
Luxembourg ranks second among foreign investors in Slovenia, with a 33% increase in direct investments in 2018 compared to the year before. With regard to research, the ministers discussed possible cooperation in establishing an artificial intelligence international research centre with the support of UNESCO and hosted at the Jožef Stefan Institute.
In discussing the future of the European Union the ministers agreed on the importance of enhancing the EU, not only as a guarantee of external and internal security, but also economic and social security. In addition, the European Union protects our values. The ministers advocated the preserving of the institutional balance, which is the best way to provide for the common interest of smaller member states.
The interlocutors called for the continuation of the Western Balkans enlargement process and for further support in their efforts for reforms and progress. Minister Cerar expressed interest for cooperation in projects in the Western Balkans, because the EU must remain active in this part of Europe.
He thanked his counterpart for the support of the Benelux countries in efforts to implement the final and binding arbitral award on the boundary between Slovenia and Croatia (joint statement by the three Benelux prime ministers in June 2017).
Minister Cerar reaffirmed Slovenia’s support in extending the Schengen area, but on the condition that all security and technical requirements are met and that the extension does not pose a security threat for the EU.
This second visit by Minister Asselborn to Slovenia in two years indicates the continuation of a regular and close dialogue between two like-minded EU member states. During his visit, the Luxembourg minister was also received by President Borut Pahor, Prime Minister Marjan Šarec and Minister of Defence Karl Erjavec.