“We would like to return to extensive consultations in the coming months,” the chief of Polish diplomacy, Witold Waszczykowski, said after a meeting with the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of the French Republic, Jean-Yves Le Drian. The Polish foreign minister was taking part in the OSCE Ministerial Council in Paris.
The ministers spoke mostly about ‘a new beginning’ in Polish-French relations. Witold Waszczykowski and Jean-Yves Le Drian agreed about the need to make greater effort to break the deadlock after the end of negotiations on multi-purpose helicopters for the Polish army. Minister Waszczykowski reiterated his invitation for the French partner to visit Warsaw and expressed his hope that it would help identify specific areas for bilateral cooperation to focus on in the immediate term. “We expressed our hope that we would be able to fulfil the presidents’ wish, made known in Brussels, for a Weimar Triangle meeting in August. It’s not a final decision yet, it was a preliminary declaration from the presidents. We want to implement it by extensive consultations in many areas of mutual interest,” emphasised Minister Waszczykowski.
Speaking about the current challenges ahead of Europe, the ministers stressed that the constant threat to Europe’s security calls for resolute responses from political leaders, and that effective solutions depend on the member states acting in unison. They also underlined that the European Union needs reforms to get close to Europeans and their values again. It is a priority to make sure that citizens are safe and to improve European competitiveness with a view to boosting prosperity. In this context the chief of Polish diplomacy commented on the issue of the revision of the Posting of Workers Directive. He expressed Poland’s concern over the actions that we believe threaten the free market. “There are certain issues that divide us, like the Posting of Workers Directive. These issues are discussed not only between Poland and France, but also in the whole European Union. We will also raise these issues in bilateral meetings,” said Minister Waszczykowski after the meeting.
Minister Le Drian congratulated Poland on winning a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council. He expressed his firm belief that Polish-French cooperation will be close and effective also on this forum. “We agreed that we will start consultations on various topics in the months to come. The MFA is responsible for such issues as European cooperation or the UN. It is obvious that as a member of the Security Council we will cooperate with France in this area,” said the Polish top diplomat after the meeting.
The ministers took similar positions on the situation in the EU’s eastern neighbourhood. They expressed their concern about the lack of progress in eastern Europe and highlighted the priority of the full implementation of the Minsk agreements to bring solution to the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. The ministers also discussed climate change policy. They agreed that President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris agreement will not adversely affect France’s and Poland’s commitment to the accord.
MFA Press Office