Vienna, 9 December 2005 - On Monday, 12 December 2005 Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik will participate in the meeting of the European Union General Affairs and External Relations Council in Brussels.
The meeting will focus on the preparations for the forthcoming European Council on 15 and 16 December, where the main topic on the agenda will be the Financial Perspective for the period 2007-2013.
With regard to external relations the Foreign Ministers will be discussing the progress of the negotiations on the future status of Kosovo, the EU Strategy for Africa, the Commission's Progress Reports on the countries of the Western Balkans and the Commission's recommendation to award candidate status to FYROM (Macedonia), as well as the European Neighbourhood Policy. Further topics on the agenda include the situation in the border conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea and the status of the preparations for the forthcoming WTO negotiations in Hong Kong.
Foreign Minister Plassnik will also present the Council with the Annual Work Programme for 2006, which has been jointly elaborated by Austria and Finland.
Contact for further enquiries:
Ministry for Foreign Affairs
From Austria: 050 1150-3262, 4549, 4550
From abroad: ++43 50 1150-3262, 4549, 4550
Fax: 050 1159 213 or ++43 50 1159 213
Vienna, 28 January 2005 On Monday, 31 January 2005, Minister for Foreign Affairs Ursula Plassnik will participate in the meeting of the European Union General Affairs and External Relations Council in Brussels.
The General Affairs agenda includes a presentation of the Operational Programme of Council Activities for 2005 and the Work Programme of the European Commission for 2005. A debate on the financial perspective for the period 2007-2013 is also planned.
The External Relations Council will focus on the elections in Iraq which will be held the day before and the current developments in the Middle East. Following on from the Extraordinary Meeting of the Council of 7 January 2005 to discuss Europe's response to the tsunami disaster in South-East Asia, the Council is also aiming to adopt an operational action plan. In addition, the Foreign Ministers will discuss the European Union's future policy towards Ukraine and exchange opinions on the latest developments in the Western Balkans and Sudan.
Vienna, 19 November 2004 - On Monday, 22 November 2004 Minister for Foreign Affairs Ursula Plassnik will take part in the EU General Affairs and External Relations Council in Brussels.
One of the key topics for discussion will be the preparations for the European Council summit on 17 December. Other items on the agenda include the Community's financial perspective for 2007-2013 as well as a series of foreign and security policy matters (inter alia the Middle East peace process, the Ukraine, the Western Balkans and Iran).
The Foreign Minister will also participate in the annual EU-Western Balkans Forum on the margins of the Council meeting. Monday's EU General Affairs Council will also be attended by the Defence Ministers of the Member States, including Federal Minister Günther Platter.