Press Advisories

22. 8. 2017 21:43

Prime Minister Sobotka talked with Jordanian Prime Minister Al-Mulki on safety and trade cooperation, migration crisis and power engineering

Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka met Jordanian Prime Minister Hani Fawzi Al-Mulkim on 22 August 2017.
Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka met Jordanian Prime Minister Hani Fawzi Al-Mulkim on 22 August 2017.
On Tuesday, 22 August 2017, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka met with the Prime Minister of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan Hani Fawzi Al-Mulki. In the Straka Academy, they discussed the development of commercial cooperation, the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, safety and defence cooperation, and Jordan’s support in coping with the migration crisis. The meeting was attended by Minister of Defence Martin Stropnický. Jordanian Prime Minister visited the Czech Republic for the first time ever.

Jordan, together with Israel, is the key partner of the Czech Republic in the Middle East. In April this year, the Czech Republic and Jordan signed an Economic Cooperation Agreement, which now comes into force after the ratification process is completed on both parties.

One of the themes of the negotiations was to strengthen mutual trade and economic cooperation. Mutual trade increased by 62% in 2016 compared to 2015, mainly thanks to cooperation between Czech and Jordanian companies. One of the possibilities of cooperation include deliveries for military and state hospitals in Jordan after the local government has included Czech medical equipment manufacturers in the approved list of potential suppliers. Another opportunity appears in public transport, water management and possibly also food industry. According to Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, the opening of the Jordanian embassy in Prague would also help.

Defence and security is another area that the prime ministers spoke about. Both parties have expressed their interest in continuing the excellent cooperation that has benefited from the role of the NATO Contact Embassy in Jordan. The Czech Republic held it in 2013-2016. Specific bilateral defence cooperation projects include the training of Jordanian partners in areas such as protection against weapons of mass destruction, destruction of explosive devices, logistics or military health. In the Middle East, the Jordanians belong to significant importers of military material, which the Czech armaments industry also benefits from.

Premier Bohuslav Sobotka and Prime Minister Hani Fawzi Al-Mulki also discussed the issue of migration. Jordan faces a large influx of refugees in connection with ongoing conflicts in neighbouring Syria and Iraq. The Czech Republic continues to focus on tackling the problems in source countries and stabilising measures to help the population in coping with the migration and refugee crisis. This is also why the Czech Republic provides Jordan with the largest humanitarian and financial support from all the affected states. Specific projects include building infrastructure and expanding the capacities of the Zaatari and Azrak refugee camps, another 40 million crowns is intended to improve the living conditions of nearly 70,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan. The government provided to the Jordanian Ministry of the Interior 10 million crowns and decided on another donation of 15 million crowns at the meeting on 21 August 2017. In addition to the financial assistance, the Czech Republic also provides refugees with medical care within the MEDEVAC project. Since 2013 there have been 32 Czech medical teams.

The fight against terrorism, the situation in Syria, Iraq and the peace process in the Middle East were other current topic of the meeting. Today, the Cooperation Agreement between the Czech Republic and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on the development of the peaceful use of nuclear energy has been signed in the presence of the prime ministers, which represents a significant step forward in cooperation between both the countries in the field of energy. The agreement gives the opportunity to a number of Czech entities from universities through research institutes to industry to participate in the development of the Jordanian peacekeeping nuclear sector.

Last time, Bohuslav Sobotka met with Jordanian Prime Minister in October 2015, when the Czech Prime Minister visited the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. In February 2017, Jordanian Prince Hasan bin Talál arrived in Prague.

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