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May 22, 2022

Ilgvars Kļava, Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia in Romania: The vision of Latvian presidency on future development of EU policies is progressive and realistic

It is my great honor to address readers of “Nine o’clock” on the occasion of Europe’s Day. As a Member State that currently holds Presidency of the Council of the European Union Latvia devotes great importance for the Europe’s Day. The progressive view on the future of Europe, as had Mr. Schumann, was important in the year 1950, it has the same importance 65 years later, in 2015. I believe, that the vision of Latvian presidency on future development of EU policies is progressive and realistic enough, taking into account current international situation and the situation in the EU. We, the Latvian presidency of the Council of the European Union, we are actively contributing to the fulfillment of the common European Agenda.

One can call Europe’s Day the Day of Unity of Europe. On a personal basis I would like to mention one important thing that has occurred to me during preparation phase of our Presidency in Riga.

The presidency makes stronger this very specific sense of togetherness – this feeling of being united with other European nations in a joint endeavor. And it is much more than shuttle diplomacy, high ranking guests and numerous photo-opportunities – they are important, no doubt about that.

But when I was walking through the corridors of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia I kept noticing new name tags on the doors – apparently there were not Latvian names. So those were names of seconded diplomats from many other European Union Member States. And I thought, oh – isn’t that a great thing where diplomats from different EU countries can work together in our ministry and each and every one of them ads a valuable national experience in dealing with topical issues. This is one great feature of the European Union where countries join forces and work together for a common cause.

Latvia during her presidency of the Council of the European Union can make contribution in fields where we feel confident – be it in digital technologies, be it in foreign policy towards our Eastern neighbors – where Eastern Partnership Summit in Riga comes into agenda this year in May, or be it in the field of economy and competitiveness.

And on a less cheerful note, one should not forget that all above mentioned is happening against the background of international political situation that is getting more and more complicated due to the situation in Ukraine.

War in Europe, unfortunately, once again has become a reality. It was unthinkable a few years ago but now it has become a reality. Our hearts are with Ukrainian people at this difficult time. We strongly believe that every nation has the right to determine the fate of their country and the direction it wants to go.

But on a positive note: the European Union takes united position in this regard as does the NATO Alliance by taking precautionary measures to secure the Eastern Flank. Thanks to that our countries can live in security. Of course, that given the deteriorating security situation, we should pay more attention to the defense needs. Improving the security situation in Europe is a joint Effort.

So let’s have a positive look into the future and celebrate Europe’s Day!


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