Kariņš: European Union's climate policy is an opportunity for Latvia’s economy
When discussing the strategic objectives of the European Union (EU) for the next five years at the informal European Council meeting in Sibiu (Romania), Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš stressed that climate change is one of the most pressing EU and global challenges. The countries alone are unable to meet this challenge. They must cooperate actively and take action.
During the informal meeting, Latvia joined Belgium, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden in calling on the EU to pursue a more ambitious strategy to tackle climate change.
“To date, Latvia has been passively involved in the implementation of the climate policy. We must radically change the approach: from a country that reluctantly accepts the decisions by other countries, to a country that is one of the main promoters of the climate policy in the European Union. Latvia joins a group of the EU Member States, which believe that Europe needs to address climate change seriously and devote more resources to tackling this global challenge. It is also our opportunity – by means of the EU's total investment in cohesion policy, to substantially transform Latvia's economy so that it can generate and offer a variety of technological solutions and services to tackle climate change at global level,” said K.Kariņš.
During the discussion, the Prime Minister expressed his view that the EU's growth and prosperity are based on the single market, which allows it to compete globally with countries such as China, India and the United States. It is of utmost importance to further develop and strengthen the Single Market. It is necessary to further develop a banking union and to introduce centralized monitoring of the prevention of money laundering.
K. Kariņš stressed the need to equalize the standards of living more rapidly in the EU, including by ensuring a smooth investment of the EU funds in R&D across the EU. The next EU multiannual budget must serve this purpose.
The Prime Minister is of the opinion that, when shaping the future of the EU, it is essential for the Member States to continue close cooperation on strengthening external borders and in the fight against the spread of disinformation.
At the meeting, the EU leaders adopted the Sibiu Declaration, which highlights the importance of unity among the EU Member States.