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Foreign Minister Urmas Paet: European Union and USA Working Together is Only Option

29.03.2012

No. 79-E

While giving a public lecture at George Washington University in Washington DC, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that in the context of growing economic competitiveness it is important that the European Union and United States co-operate and work together in the leading role. “Estonia feels that it is essential for the European Union and USA to conclude a free trade agreement,” he added.

Talking about developments in the European Union, Paet stated that Europe has always come out of crises even stronger. “I believe that despite the pessimistic forecasts, Europe is once again coming out of the crisis,” he noted. “There was an extremely ambitious plan behind the creation of a unified Europe and now, 60 years later, the idea of a war between European nations seems absurd,” said Paet. “And regardless of some economic difficulties, European countries remain among the most prosperous in the world,” he added.

In his speech, Paet noted that in order to combat the debt crisis, European countries must make budget cuts. “Taking loans at the expense of future generations or security is not sustainable,” he asserted. “Europe’s solution to the debt crisis has two parts – financial stability and solidarity,” added the foreign minister.

The Estonian foreign minister stated that regardless of internal difficulties, the European Union is still popular. “Currently there are 11 more countries that would like to join the European Union. So we can see that the EU is still attractive,” he added.

In Washington Foreign Minister Paet also met with Strobe Talbott, the president of the USA’s oldest think tank the Brookings Institution. At their meeting Paet and Talbott spoke about developments in Russia and matters related to the US presidential elections.

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