Vienna, 21 October 2009 Press release

Spindelegger: "Common interests in European policy issues"

Foreign Minister meets Lithuanian colleague Ušackas

Vienna, October 21st 2009 - "Our bilateral relations are excellent and are characterized by a lot of common ground“, said Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger in connection with today's working visit by the Lithuanian Foreign Minister Vygaudas Ušackas in Vienna.The Foreign Minister emphasized the good cooperation on a cultural, political, and economic level."The fact that Wilna and Linz are European Cultural Capitals this year is a visible expression of this.There is still a lot of unexploited potential, especially in the field of business", said the Minister, adding that the interest of Austrian companies in the region continues to be unabated despite the financial crisis.In the last five years alone, the exchange of goods between Lithuania and Austria has almost doubled.

"Lithuania and Austria share the same viewpoints on many foreign and European policy issues.These include, for instance our common engagement for the European Neighbourhood Policy and the support for the EU rapprochement of the Western Balkans.Therefore, we have an interest in further intensifying our cooperation with Lithuania", stressed the Foreign Minister.Therefore, apart from bilateral topics, the discussions with colleague Ušackas focused in particular on Lithuania’s OSCE Presidency in 2011 and it’s EU Presidency in the second half of the year 2013."We have a common interest in establishing the partnership with EU’s Eastern and South-eastern neighbours on a modern and resilient basis.The Eastern Partnership, the Baltic Sea Strategy, and the Danube Strategy offer new platforms we can build upon.I am convinced that we can mutually benefit from our respective experiences and knowledge“, said Spindelegger.

In addition, the foreign ministers discussed the latest developments on a European level, especially in view of the upcoming EU Summit, which will also deal with the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon."We also agree on this issue:Following the Irish 'Yes', the objective to establish Europe on a new sound basis with the Treaty of Lisbon is now within reach.We expect that the Czech Republic will settle the last formal step still pending, so that the Treaty can enter into force as quickly as possible.The Treaty was approved by the representatives of the people in all 27 Member States.Therefore, the European public would have little sympathy if one would now try to artificially delay the ratification process."

Federal Ministry for European and
International Affairs Press Department
Tel.: +43 (0) 50 1150-3262, 4549, 4550, 3739
Fax: +43 (0) 50 1159-213