Press Advisories

10. 5. 2023 18:11

Prime Minister Petr Fiala held talks with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni on strengthening energy security

Prime Minister Petr Fiala held talks with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni at Kramář's villa, 10 May 2023.
Prime Minister Petr Fiala held talks with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni at Kramář's villa, 10 May 2023.
On Wednesday, 10 May 2023, the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Petr Fiala met with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in Prague. The main topics of the meeting were security and defence cooperation, energy security and the situation in Ukraine. The Prime Ministers also discussed their positions on European legislation – especially on EURO 7 and migration.

The Czech Prime Minister thanked the Italian Prime Minister for her support for the expansion of the TAL pipeline, which is crucial for the Czech Republic's energy security. “At the moment, an agreement has been reached between MERO and the shareholders of the TAL consortium regarding the contract for the implementation of the project, which should be completed in 2024 and signed this month,” said Prime Minister Fiala.

The topic of the meeting also included possible cooperation on future gas supplies. “Italy, as one of Europe's largest natural gas markets, is interested in becoming a major hub for Central European countries, which is of interest to us. Italy is also planning to build LNG terminals, so the Czech Republic could be interested in LNG supplies from them in the future,” added the Prime Minister.

The two Prime Ministers also discussed defence cooperation. “The Czech Republic recently organised a presentation of Czech defence industry companies in Rome for the representatives of the Italian armed forces and representatives of the Italian Ministry of Defence. Based on the positive feedback, we see a number of opportunities for the development of cooperation in the areas of unmanned aerial vehicles, radars, electronic warfare systems and ammunition,” added the Czech Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Fiala appreciated that Italy is a partner with whom we can have an open debate on the reform of the European asylum and migration policy. The country is one of those most affected by irregular migration. “The Prime Minister is coming up with a number of proposals in the European institutions that have the support of the Czech Republic. During the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU, we managed to make significant progress in the negotiations on the Pact on Migration and Asylum, which is supposed to be one of the key reforms. The aim is to improve cooperation with countries of origin and transit. The situation is really serious. If we address the situation only at the EU border, it is too late. We need to take preventive measures. It is important to actively fight against people smugglers,” said Petr Fiala.

Italy, like the Czech Republic, shares strong concerns about the serious economic and social impacts of the forthcoming Euro 7 standard, which could threaten the future and competitiveness of the automotive industry and the availability of vehicles for citizens. “We are concerned that the proposal may significantly reduce the availability of smaller vehicles, as well as a range of other impacts.  I am glad that the Czech Republic, together with Italy, is cooperating within a group of like-minded states to push through changes to the proposal that will mitigate the negative impact of this legislation as much as possible,”said the Czech Prime Minister.

Italy is one of the most important trading partners of the Czech Republic. Foreign trade between the two countries reached a turnover of almost EUR 18 billion last year.

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