Bratislava / Vienna – Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) will meet his counterparts from Slovakia and the Czech Republic, Eduard Heger and Andrej Babis, in Bratislava next Tuesday. The three heads of government are jointly taking part in the GLOBSEC security forum in the Slovak capital. A bilateral meeting between the Chancellor and Heger is planned beforehand.
Broad range of topics
According to the Federal Chancellery, the meeting of the three heads of government in the so-called Slavkov format (in German Austerlitz format) will focus on cross-border cooperation, EU issues, economic reconstruction, climate protection, migration and the situation in Belarus. Kurz, Babis and Heger will then take part in a panel at the GLOBSEC conference on the subject of an economic restart after the corona pandemic.
The bilateral meeting between the Chancellor and his Slovakian counterpart will also deal with the contentious issue of nuclear power. The Slovak nuclear supervisory authority gave the green light in mid-May for the commissioning of the third reactor block of the Mochovce nuclear power plant near the border. Despite massive protests from Austria, the new reactor block should go into operation before the end of the year. On the part of Austrian nuclear opponents, there are massive concerns about the safety of the nuclear power plant, which is only about 100 kilometers from the Austrian border.
Expansion of bilateral relations
Kurz and Heger only met a few weeks ago in Vienna at the beginning of May. The Slovak Prime Minister Kurz had invited them to Bratislava and pointed out that no German Chancellor had visited Bratislava since 2014. “Slovakia and Austria are close neighbors and friends. I am therefore very happy about the invitation from Prime Minister Heger, who was last in Vienna in May. We want to talk about the further expansion of bilateral relations, our negative attitude towards nuclear power and Belarus and talk about the economic upturn after the global economic crisis, “said Kurz in a statement prior to his visit.
Just one day after the visit, Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg (ÖVP) will also travel to Bratislava to also take part in the two-day GLOBSEC conference on Wednesday. (APA, June 11, 2021)