We must act with shared commitment to addressing energy prices for the benefit of all citizens and businesses – Minister Ian Borg at the General Affairs Council

We must act with shared commitment to addressing energy prices for the benefit of all citizens and businesses – Minister Ian Borg at the General Affairs Council

Reference Number: PR221418, Press Release Issue Date: Oct 19, 2022
 

“We must act with shared commitment to address and bring energy prices down for the benefit of all our citizens and businesses”. This was reiterated by the Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade Ian Borg at the General Affairs Council in Luxembourg when preparing for the meeting of the European Council to be held later this week.

 

Minister Ian Borg said, “Since we are amongst the group that has been calling for the introduction of a gas price cap, we will be carefully assessing the details of the Commission’s proposals. The package needs to have an impact on all member states. In this regard, we know that there are divergent positions amongst us, and the issue is technically very complex, but surely there must be ways to square this circle”.

 

Apart from the issue of high energy prices, the European Council will also address issues related to the war in Ukraine, including food security. as well as a number of external relations issues. Heads of state and government will prepare for the EU-ASEAN meeting in December and COP 27, to be held next month in Sharm El Sheikh, amongst others.

 

On Ukraine and the indiscriminate targeting of civilians and critical civilian infrastructure, Minister Borg reiterated his message at the Foreign Affairs Council on EU unity and coordination with like-minded partners.

 

He reiterated that Malta looks forward to the preparations for the EU-ASEAN Summit in December and deepening cooperation in a variety of areas such as connectivity, post-pandemic recovery, climate, trade, and sustainable development for the region at large. Dr Borg also recalled the importance of good preparation by the EU for COP 27.

 

The GAC ministers held a policy debate on the electoral law proposal and an extensive discussion on the follow-up of the Conference on the Future of Europe. Dr Borg stressed that this exercise was never about the institutions. “European citizens, European families, and European businesses must remain at the heart of the exercise”. Most Ministers expressed caution with regard to rushing into a Treaty Change exercise, adding that there were many more pressing issues on the EU’s agenda right now.

 

On the margins of the General Affairs Council, Minister Borg also held bilateral meetings with the State Secretary for European Affairs of Portugal, Tiago Antunes, and with the Secretary of State for the European Union of Spain, Pascual Ignacio Navarro Rios. They discussed shared common interests between the respective countries regarding the challenges and opportunities of the Southern Neighbourhood and the need to improve the EU’s energy interconnections.


Minister Borg participates in the General Affairs Council

Minister Borg meets State Secretary for European Affairs of Portugal, Tiago Antunes

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Dr Borg meets Secretary of State for the EU of Spain, Pascual Ignacio Navarro Rios