President Gitanas Nausėda responded to the letter from President Andrzej Duda of Poland and expressed his views on possible joint action to tackle the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, the European Union’s agenda and cooperation with a view to achieving common objectives in the Community, as well as security, geopolitical and economic situation in the region.
The President also expressed gratitude to the President of Poland for his contribution to fostering and strengthening bilateral relations between Lithuania and Poland.
The President of Lithuania as well as the President of Poland emphasized that it was necessary to think about working together after the crisis, once the necessary decisive decisions had been taken to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic and social consequences.
In his letter, President Nausėda said that solidarity, unity and efficiency had to be the guiding principles for the EU decision-making. The President identified three key conditions for recovery of Europe: these include smooth functioning and strengthening of the internal market, a larger EU budget, especially for cohesion and agriculture, and a European recovery fund geared to high value-added investments and in line with the financial needs.
“The COVID-19 crisis has shown that we need to take specific action to boost our health industry and reduce dependence of the European Union on supplies from the third countries. I therefore share your view that it is necessary to enhance cooperation between the national health care systems, establish effective cross-border support mechanisms and focus on dialogue between countries to promote research”, said the President in his letter.
The President also expressed support to his Polish counterpart calling to remain vigilant, to uphold the European values and to continue to defend democracy, international law, human rights and freedoms. It is highly important now, as we see emerging hybrid threats and disinformation campaigns. In the words of the President, it is particularly important to activate all the EU instruments in our immediate neighborhood in order to further involve the Eastern Partnership countries in joint EU political and economic initiatives.
The President of Lithuania as well as the President of Poland emphasized that strengthening of military security and defense was a priority. “Unfortunately, the coronavirus pandemic has not eliminated the conventional threats in the vicinity, on the contrary, those threats have intensified. We must keep our defense funding at least at 2 percent of GDP to ensure our readiness. NATO was and will continue to be a vital interest and an irreplaceable guarantor of security both for Poland and Lithuania”, the President said.
The President said that stepping up civil readiness mechanisms in Europe was crucial not only for dealing with the health crisis, but also for nuclear and radiological incidents. According to the President, the nuclear safety situation in the region is a matter of concern, as the launch of the Ostravets NPP located in the immediate vicinity is scheduled without the implementation of safety standards and the EU recommendations on risk and resilience to external threats. With Poland’s active involvement, Lithuania is prepared to establish a regional EU center for nuclear and radiological threats.
The President stressed that it was necessary to ensure that electricity produced by unsafe nuclear power plants in the third countries did not enter the EU market.
In his letter, the President expressed hope that sustainable economic growth focusing on compatibility of environmental and social policies as well as implementation of climate goals together with adequate funding would allow Europe to become even more competitive and high value-added economy. This would also make the people of Lithuania and Poland more resilient to future crises and challenges.
Lithuania and Poland are involved in ambitious critical infrastructure projects, including but not limited to synchronization of the power grid with that of continental Europe, gas market, rail and road connectivity projects which will contribute the creation of a fully-fledged EU market.
President Nausėda highlighted that those goals could not be achieved without solidarity and cooperation between the two states and reassured that Lithuania was prepared to continue fostering mutual cooperation based on shared history, values and traditions.
Last updated 2020.05.29 18:42Back