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Atlantic Council honours President Barroso

On Wednesday night in Washington, D.C., President Barroso was honoured with the 2014 award for Distinguished International Leadership for his “dedication to the cause of European integration and ensuring that the benefits of that integration—stability, prosperity, and democracy—reach across an ever-widening Europe.”

30/04/2014

 © EU

Each year the Atlantic Council honours distinguished leaders for their versatile contributions to the strengthening of the transatlantic relationship.

This year's awards were also presented to the US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, to the Airbus Group CEO Tom Enders, to the musician, activist, and civic leader of the Euromaidan Ruslana Lyzhychko, and to the International Security Assistance Force and US Forces Afghanistan Commander Joseph F. Dunford, Jr.

Furthermore, the Atlantic Council organised a special tribute to NATO and the EU on the occasion of the anniversaries of their historic enlargements, in Washington on April 29-30. The Atlantic Council convened leaders from across North America and Europe for a major two-day conference advancing the legacy of a "Europe Whole and Free."

More info on the EU and USA

Read the press release

Watch the video

President Barroso visits Slovakia

Today, President Barroso visited Bratislava, where he met the President of the Slovak Republic, Ivan Gašparovič, Prime Minister Robert Fico and received the Doctor Honors Causa degree at the University of Economics.

28/04/2014

EC

President Barroso was awarded by President Gašparovič the Order of the 2nd Class White Double Cross at the State Award ceremony. Upon receiving the order, President Barroso said:

"I am tremendously honoured to receive this award. And I am very moved to receive this distinction at this particular moment in time, when we celebrate the country's accession to the European Union ten years ago this week, an occasion that is so significant for the identity of today's Slovak Republic, a milestone in the history of Europe and an event that symbolises everything the Union stands for.

So while I am on this occasion first of all thankful for the honour of receiving this award, I want above all to congratulate you and the Slovak people on the results you have achieved over the years - a historic event well worth celebrating, and an inspiration for the future of the country, which I am sure will be equally outstanding."

The award ceremony was followed by a press conference.

Following a bilateral meeting of President Barroso and Prime Minister Robert Fico, they attended the ceremony of signing the Memorandum of Understanding with Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan.

Later on the same day, President Barroso visited the Bratislava University of Economics for a ceremony awarding him the title Doctor Honoris Causa. Following this ceremony, President Barroso held a lecture, where he said:

"Since joining the European Union, Slovakia was the fastest among the Visegrad countries to catch up with more prosperous economies, with per capita income rising from 57% of the EU average in 2004 to 76% in 2012. In the pre-crisis years, average economic growth reached 7% - even exceeding 10% in 2007 – and in spite of the crisis Slovakia has kept up the pace as one of the most rapidly growing countries in Europe. The EU also helped Slovakia to tackle one of its biggest problems - unemployment which was at the level of 19% in 2004. Nevertheless, the current level of above 13% is still high and further efforts are needed.

Europe has also offered opportunities. […] Europe has offered support. […]But most important, more than such figures that I like to give as examples, is the fact that Europe, apart from opportunities and financial support, provided the framework for Slovakia to reform its structures, to fuel a process that fundamentally updated the country's political, economic, social, and administrative institutions to promote the stability and security investors, entrepreneurs and citizens demand."

Watch the video

President Barroso welcomes breakthrough leading to gas flows from Slovakia to Ukraine

Today, the European Commission has welcomed the signature of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) enabling gas flows from Slovakia to Ukraine.

28/04/2014

Commons

The Commission acted as a facilitator in the negotiations that led to today’s breakthrough. Along with the MoU, the gas pipeline operators concerned – the Slovakian company Eustream and the Ukrainian company Ukrtransgaz – will furthermore sign a Framework Interconnection Agreement today, laying out the technical details of the foreseen solution.

President Barroso said:

"I warmly congratulate all parties involved on the breakthrough in the negotiations on gas flows from Slovakia to Ukraine. This is an important first step to diversify Ukraine’s sources of gas supply and contributes to greater energy security in Eastern Europe and the EU as a whole. It shows the EU's strong commitment in support of Ukraine's energy sector, which is also reflected in the economic and financial package the Union has swiftly provided for Ukraine in the past weeks."

President Barroso will attend the ceremony later today together with Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico and Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan.

Read the Press Release

President Barroso traveling to the U.S.

Next week, President Barroso will travel to the U.S. to take part in the conference "Toward a Europe Whole and Free" at the Atlantic Council in Washington (30.4.).

25/04/2014

Commons

At this conference, President Barroso will be awarded the 2014 Distinguished Leadership Award for international leadership during a dinner organised by the Atlantic Council.

While in Washington, he is scheduled to meet representatives of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, of the U.S. Council and the Senate as well as the Chief Justice of the United States, John Roberts.

Continuing his trip to the West Coast, President Barroso will participate in a meeting under the heading "Transatlantic Ties That Bind: Deepening EU-US Cooperation" at the Pacific Council on International Policy in Los Angeles on 2nd of May.

He will also give a speech at Stanford University.

President Barroso participates in 'Portugal: Path to growth and jobs' conference in Lisbon

On 11 April President José Manuel Barroso and several Commissioners travelled to Lisbon for the conference 'Portugal: Path to growth and jobs' ('Rumo ao emprego e crescimento').

11/04/2014

EC

President Barroso spoke at the opening session of the conference, which discussed how EU policies and funding can help Portugal to emerge stronger from the crisis.

Also attending from the Commission's side were:

- Antonio Tajani, Vice-President for Industry and Entrepreneurship;

- Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth;

- Maria Damanaki, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries;

- Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for Regional Policy;

- László Andor, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion; and

- Dacian Cioloş, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development.

Portuguese President Aníbal Cavaco Silva and Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho also speak at the event, which is open to the press.

The speech by President Barroso at the conference will be broadcast on 11 April 2014 at 7.30pm CET by EBS.

For more information on the conference 'Portugal: Path to growth and jobs' (Lisbon, 11/04/2014), please visit the website of the Commission's Representation in Portugal.

Read President Barroso's speech (in Portuguese).

President Barroso travels to Spain

On 10 April 2014, President Barroso travelled to Spain on official mission, visiting the OHIM in Alicante and meeting President Rajoy in Madrid.

10/04/2014

EC

On April 10th, President Barroso visited the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) in Alicante. There, he met staff members from across OHIM’s departments and services, and was briefed on OHIM’s research work and studies, as well as its projects inside and outside the EU.  The President marked the end of his visit by unveiling a commemorative plaque at the construction site of OHIM´s new wing to mark the Office’s 20th anniversary.

In the afternoon of April 10th, President Barroso travelled to Madrid, where he met Spanish President Mariano Rajoy.

Read the speech by President Barroso at the OHIM (11/04/2014)

Watch the speech by President Barroso at the OHIM (11/04/2014)

President Barroso to visit OHIM

The President of the European Commission, José Manuel Durão Barroso, will visit the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) on April 10.

09/04/2014

EC

The visit will be focused on the work of OHIM and its staff. OHIM is the largest EU agency, and has been based in Alicante since 1994.

President Barroso will meet staff members from across OHIM’s departments and services during his trip to Alicante, including those who work in its multi-lingual trade mark and design registration operations.  He will also be briefed on OHIM’s research work and studies, as well as its projects inside and outside the EU.

President Barroso will end his visit by unveiling a commemorative plaque at the construction site of OHIM´s new wing to mark the Office’s 20th anniversary.

In the afternoon, he will meet Mr Mariano Rajoy, Prime Minister of Spain, in Madrid.

Support Group for Ukraine

The European Commission has decided today to create a Support Group for Ukraine.

09/04/2014

EC

This Support Group will provide a focal point, structure, overview and guidance for the Commission's work to support Ukraine. It will also help mobilise Member States' expertise and further enhance coordination with other donors and the International Financing Institutions.

"The European Commission is determined to help Ukraine for the long term.", said President Barroso. "The Commission has already proposed an overall support package worth of at least €11 billion over the next couple of years and some of these measures are already being rolled out. The political chapters of the Association Agreement have been signed, sealing the free and democratic choice of Ukraine to be closely associated with the European Union. Today's decision to create a Support Group will ensure that the Ukrainian authorities have all the support they need in undertaking the political and economic reforms that are necessary to stabilise the country. Our common goal is to have a democratic, independent and prosperous Ukraine."

Support Group for Ukraine

European Union's support to Ukraine-update

European Commission's support to Ukraine (5 March 2014)

President Barroso urges EU countries to implement youth guarantees

President Barroso has called on EU Member States to quickly guarantee young people a job, training or further study to help combat "alarming" levels of youth unemployment in Europe.

08/04/2014

EC

President Barroso has called on EU Member States to quickly guarantee young people a job, training or further study to help combat "alarming" levels of youth unemployment in Europe.

Despite improvements in growth, youth employment remains at 22.9% in the EU, almost twice as high as the overall unemployment rate.

"The reality is that youth unemployment has reached alarming levels, representing a waste of human resources and talent that Europe cannot afford," President Barroso said during a conference in Brussels on 8 April.

"The establishment of a Youth Guarantee scheme in all Member States is a major structural reform and also a key investment for the future," President Barroso said.

Member States agreed in February 2013 to guarantee under-25s a quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within four months of them leaving school or becoming unemployed.

President Barroso told the conference, 'Youth Guarantee - Making it Happen', that current schemes to address youth employment "are almost universally weak in reaching out effectively to young people" that are not in work, school or training. "With the Youth Guarantee, we aim to change this," he said.

He added that while most of the work to implement youth guarantees had to be done at national level, the EU was supporting member states through specific initiatives and funding, including:

He said that "money needs to start flowing" and urged Member States to step up their efforts to implement the Youth Employment Initiative as soon as possible.

"It is now high time we delivered on the ground and achieved concrete results," he said. "Europe as a political project […] can only prosper if we give our young people opportunities. This is indeed one of the most existential issues that we are facing, not to have a lost generation in Europe. Those young people will only embrace Europe if Europe embraces them."

Read president Barroso's speech in full

Watch President Barroso's speech from the conference, 'Youth Guarantee - Making it Happen'

Press release on the 'Youth Guarantee - Making it Happen' conference

President Barroso meets with Tom Donohue, President and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Today Commission President José Manuel Barroso received Tom Donohue, the President and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

08/04/2014

EC

In this meeting, which took place just two weeks after the EU-US Summit, they discussed several pressing issues, such as the 9th WTO Ministerial in Bali, the current situation in Ukraine and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

President Barroso reaffirmed the EU's commitment to progressing with TTIP and finding an agreement, while stressing that content is more important than a speedy conclusion of negotiations. According to the President, it is mandatory that solutions in the regulatory cluster be found within the confines of both the European and American systems and in respect of environmental, social and consumer norms.

European Union External Action Service: EU relations with the United States

European Commission: EU trade relations with the United States

President Barroso received representatives of the Group of Eminent Persons of the Atlantic Basin Initiative

President Barroso has met ten representatives of the Group of Eminent Persons of the Atlantic Basin Initiative, who presented him with the “Atlantic Declaration ”.

07/04/2014

EC

This Declaration and a call for action "Generating Growth, Human Development and Security in the Atlantic Hemisphere" were adopted last month. Five areas were identified to strengthen the Atlantic framework: energy; economic growth and human development; the common heritage of the Atlantic Ocean; Human Security and to cultivate cultures of lawfulness and effective democratic governance.

President Barroso said: “The Atlantic region is an area made up essentially of democracies, countries that have embraced human rights and a market economy; however it does not have yet a geopolitical identity, or any structures enabling deeper cooperation between all the Atlantic countries in Europe, the American continent or Africa. The Atlantic has become a real microcosm of globalisation, and our ability to resolve problems together will shape the very nature of the globalisation phenomenon.”

Read the Press Release

Interview with Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger: "The crisis is a wake-up call"

In this interview (also published in Berliner Zeitung) President Barroso answered questions about the EU's relations with Russia and Ukraine, Germany's role as well as on democratic legitimacy and the upcoming elections at the European Parliament.

07/04/2014

EC

On the crisis in Ukraine and on relations with Russia:

"This is certainly the biggest challenge for the security of Europe since the fall of the Iron Curtain. […] Today, at least some EU Member States view themselves directly threatened by Russia and its flagrant violation of international law. This feeling should not be underestimated. Because feelings can quickly turn into realities."

"We must support Ukraine as much as possible on its way towards democracy and stability. That's the most important thing. And we must make it clear to Mr Putin that his approach is unacceptable."

"We have offered the country a closer relation through the association agreement. We have just signed the political association, have advanced the commercial aspects unilaterally and offered macro-economic and other financial and technical assistance amounting to a total of about EUR 11 billion. This can be a driving force for the future development of Ukraine, its stability and its prosperity."

On the EU's external and security policy:

"I decidedly support a strengthening of the common foreign and security policy. The crisis has been a wake-up call in this regard."

On Germany's role

"Germany and the Chancellor have been playing a very constructive role. Germany has helped to shape the determined response of the EU and keeps diplomatic channels open for a political solution (….) It is decisive that we speak with one voice. And that's what we are doing."

On the upcoming elections of the European Parliament:

"Eurosceptic and anti-European forces benefit from the fear of the people, which is also a result of the economic and financial crisis. We need to take this very seriously, because the seed of radicals grows best in an atmosphere of fear: it usually is a mixture of xenophobia, nationalism, chauvinism. The anti-European resentment sees Europe as the epitome of everything foreign. Nevertheless, I am convinced that a clear majority of citizens will vote for pro-European parties. I appeal to these parties, clearly and explicitly: Come out of the comfort zone! Europe cannot be technocratic or bureaucratic, it must be democratic. Fight for a united, strong and open Europe!"

On democratic legitimacy

"The strongest legitimacy for the future Commission president would be if both the European Council and the European Parliament support the candidate."

Read the full interview online

also in Berliner Zeitung

President Barroso calls for more progress on Roma integration

President Barroso has called on EU Member States to make further progress on Roma integration by supporting efforts at local level.

04/04/2014

EC

President Barroso has called on EU Member States to make further progress on Roma integration by supporting efforts at local level.

At the third EU summit on Roma integration, which took place in Brussels on 4 April, President Barroso said that the EU's Roma integration policy had led to some "positive developments", there was still a lot to do to alleviate the poverty and social exclusion of Roma people in many countries.

"It is unacceptable – and I think that unacceptable is the right word – that many Roma people are still living in utmost poverty and suffer social exclusion in a number of our cities and towns," President Barroso said.

He said the local level was where "policies meet reality" and that local authorities and civil society groups needed help to translate commitments made at national level into action.

"My main message today is this: we need to continue further on the path we have initiated, and this means being determined to push forward Roma integration at the local level," he said.

"Because there is still a lot of work ahead in order to achieve Roma integration on the ground. The process is now in motion. We need to ensure that it goes on and delivers results, in order to reach the Roma people directly," he added.

The summit, which focused on 'going local on Roma inclusion' also featured contributions by Vice-President Viviane Reding, responsible for justice, and Commissioner László Andor, in charge of employment and social affairs. The President of Romania, Traian Băsescu, and Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria, Zinaida Zlatanova, also attended, along with ministers from nine member states.

The EU's efforts on Roma integration are based on three pillars:

President Barroso said he was confident that the EU's strategy would be carried forward by the next Commission and Parliament.

Factsheet on the EU's Roma integration policies

Watch President Barroso's speech at the EU Roma summit

Read the press release from the Roma summit

Factsheet on the EU's Roma integration policies

"Peace will always be the main reason for Europe", said President Barroso in Germany

On Friday, 4th of April, President Barroso travelled to Germany where he gave a lecture at the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf on the EU's choices and challenges.

04/04/2014

 © EU

In the subsequent debate he underlined the importance of the EU as a unique project of peace, prosperity and freedom underlining that "peace will always be the main reason for Europe". In the light of mounting euro-skepticism he stressed that what will bring back confidence, support and legitimacy to the European project is concrete results which improve people's lives. He referred to a "deficit in self-confidence" in Europe's problem-solving capacity and appealed to almost 1.000 participating scientists, students and citizens by saying "Let's show that we can solve the problems. Let's not give up." In the evening, President Barroso was guest of the Lew Kopelew Forum in Cologne, named after the Kiev-born Russian intellectual, moderated by Fritz Pleitgen, the former EBU-president, in which he shared his insights on the relations with Ukraine and Russia and explained the EU's position.

Read President Barroso's speech at the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf

Watch President Barroso's speech at the Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf

Remarks by President Barroso at the press point with Professor Piper, President of the Heinrich Heine University

Watch President Barroso's speech at the press point in Düsseldorf

Watch President Barroso at the Lew Kopolew Forum in Cologne

EU-Africa Summit: President Barroso holds opening speech

At today's opening of the EU-Africa Summit, President Barroso called the "presence and the richness of the agenda […] a real illustration of the vibrant partnership that exists between our two continents."

03/04/2014

Herman Van Rompuy, José Manuel Barroso and Ban Ki-moon, Secretary General of the UN

President Barroso furthermore said:

"History shows that people and countries prosper when they open up to the world, when they expand their trade, when they exchange ideas. Our partnership with Africa, like with any other partner, is constructed as a bridge and not as a barrier to more global cooperation. […] Our partnership with Africa is a partnership based on mutual respect – and I underline the word 'respect' – a partnership of equals. A partnership that is now more relevant than ever."

Switching into French, President Barroso made the following announcement:

"Sur les dix dernières années, nous avons mobilisé 1.2 milliard d’euros pour la Facilité de Paix pour l'Afrique. Et je suis heureux de pouvoir annoncer aujourd'hui que près de 800 millions d'euros seront mobilisables pour les trois prochaines années. Car si nous soutenons le principe de solutions africaines pour les problèmes africains, nous restons solidaires quand il s'agit de faire face à ses problèmes."

The 4th EU-Africa summit is taking place from 2-3 April in Brussels with leaders of 54 African countries and 28 EU countries.

Read the full speech

President Barroso déjeune avec les Chefs d’ État du "Groupe des 5 du Sahel"

Le Président Barroso et le Président Aziz de Mauritanie ont invité les Chefs d'Etat du "Groupe des 5 du Sahel" (G5) à un déjeuner aujourd’hui à l'issue du Sommet UE-Afrique. 

03/04/2014

 © EU

Le G5 est un groupe régional réunissant la Mauritanie (Présidence), le Mali, le Niger, le Burkina Faso et le Tchad. Ce déjeuner a eu pour but de favoriser ce processus de coordination régionale, en tenant l'accent sur les questions de sécurité et de développement.

Press release

EU-Africa Summit: Closing remarks by President Barroso

The 4th EU-Africa summit (2-3 April), which took place under the heading "Investing in People, Prosperity and Peace", has come to an end earlier today.

03/04/2014

President Barroso

It had brought together the heads of States and government of 40 African countries and 21 EU countries in Brussels, as well as President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, President of the African Union Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, Chairperson of the African Commission Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

At the closing press conference, President Barroso said that he was "delighted with the results of this EU-Africa Summit which brought together in one place here in Brussels 54 African and 28 European states, as well as the African and European Union institutions."

Switching to French, President Barroso continued by saying:

"Entre 2007 et 2013 l'Union européenne et ses Etats membres ont versé quelque 140 milliards d'euros, 20 milliards chaque année, au titre de l'Aide publique au développement (APD) au continent africain qui bénéficie en moyenne de 40% de l'aide collective de l'Union Européenne. Donc le continent Africaine est de loin la priorité pour notre assistance publique au développement et on va continuer à montrer cet engagement spéciale pour l'Afrique, en considérant bien sûr toutes les raisons qu'il y a de proximité avec l'Afrique", and he anounced that he had had "le plaisir d'informer nos partenaires africains que nous maintiendrons ce même niveau d'ambition et de générosité pour la période 2014-2020. La Commission Européenne, à elle seule, c’est-à-dire du budget Européen, engagera 28 milliards d’euros en dons pour les pays africains. Mais ça, c'est seulement la partie de l'aide."

He also reminded the audience of the additional 800 million EUR which will be mobilised over the next three years for the African Peace Facility, in addition to the 1.2 billion EUR already dispatched in the last 10 years.

Stressing that there needed to be African solutions for African problems, President Barroso reaffirmed support and solidarity of the European Union. He said in this context:

"C'est pourquoi d'ailleurs l'Union Européenne a proposé – je suis fière que les États membres ont accepté – 1 milliard d'euros seule pour un instrument panafricain d'appui à l'intégration panafricain. Nous pensons que cette appropriation par nos amis africains de ses questions est essentielle. L'intégration économique entre nos deux continents sera aussi très importante pour l'avenir. Entre 2007 et 2012 le total de nos échanges commerciaux a augmenté de presque 45 % et les pays de l'Union européenne ont compté pour presque 44% des investissements directs étrangers en Afrique entre 2005 et 2010."

And finally, President Barroso mentioned the 350 million EUR which the European Commission will be mobilising to support exchanges with and grants for African students in the framework of Erasmus+.

Read the speech

President Barroso attends Africa Urban Agenda conference

On 3 April, President Barroso participated in the "Roundtable: Visionary Urban Africa: For an African Urban Agenda ", organised by BOZAR and UN-Habitat, with the support of the Commission, in Brussels.

03/04/2014

EC

This event was organised in the context of the 4th EU-Africa summit (2-3 April), to discuss urbanisation and cultural spaces and their importance for people, prosperity and peace.

President Barroso said:

"Africa is currently showing a real acceleration of urbanisation, a motor of development, growth and jobs in our globalised world; sometimes accompanied by the negative aspects of urbanisation, as a consequence of conflict and war."

The roundtable produced recommendations to better inform policymakers in the EU and Africa on urbanization and cultural spaces in African cities, to which the President referred when he said:

"So, following your recommendations – that, of course, I will bring now to my services in the Commission- I believe that cities are key to creating a public and political space and promote cultural diversity which reaches across disciplines and borders. Culture, art, music, architecture will remain key tools to complement "traditional" economic development if we are – in Africa and Europe – to seek a better, richer, more inclusive, open and sustainable future together."

About 40 leading specialists and thinkers from international organizations, pan-African organizations, academia, the private and public sectors, and civil society participated in the roundtable.

Read the speech

EU-Africa Summit: President Barroso meets UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

This morning President Barroso met UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, guest of honour of the 4th EU-Africa Summit (2-3 April) taking place in Brussels with leaders of 54 African countries and 28 EU countries.

02/04/2014

President Barroso and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

During a working breakfast, they discussed the partnership between the EU and the UN, as well as with Africa, and particularly peace and security issues. President Barroso called the meeting "very productive" and added that he was "really impressed by the great degree of convergence between the United Nations and the European Union in the most important matters of the international agenda."

At the press point following the breakfast, President Barroso referred to the EU-Africa summit when he said: "[…] there is great potential for cooperation between the European Union and the United Nations in the field of peace and security. We share the same vision, to empower our African partners to deal with the problems facing their countries and our actions are complementary from Mali to Central African Republic, from Guinea-Bissau to Sudan." He then reminded the audience – still in the context of the EU-Africa summit - of the 1.2 billion euros mobilised by the European Commission for the African Peace Facility, and added: "I am glad that today I'll be able to inform that over the next three years an additional 800 million euros will be put at the service of this African Peace Facility."

More concretely, President Barroso mentioned the situation in the Central African Republic, announcing the mini-summit that is to take place later today on this subject and mentioned the development package of 100 million euros which is under preparation, notably in the areas of education, health and food security/nutrition and a support for the organization of the elections.

They also touched upon the Post-2015 Agenda, as well as international climate action, in which context President Barroso welcomed that "the Secretary General will convene a leaders' summit on climate policy in September in New York, which will no doubt inject important momentum into the talks on a global, binding climate treaty to be concluded 2015." He added: "We really believe it is important that we commit globally. Recently I had the opportunity to discuss these matters here in Brussels with President Obama and President Xi of China. I believe it is critically important that these countries, as the two most important global emitters, can also show leadership. We very much appreciate the efforts they are doing, mainly domestically, but we believe it's also important that internationally they show leadership so that they can have a success for the global community and for the future of our planet."

Both President Barroso and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will in the two coming days attend the EU-Africa summit in Brussels.

President Barroso will deliver the opening remarks of the summit later today, and UNSG Ban Ki-moon will address Heads of State at the opening ceremony and as keynote speaker in the session on Peace and Security.

Watch the press point

Read full speech by President Barroso

President Barroso meets African leaders in the wake of EU-Africa Summit

President Barroso meets today several African Heads of State and government, including the leaders of three Portuguese-speaking countries. The meetings take place ahead of the 4th EU-Africa Summit, starting tomorrow in Brussels with leaders of 54 African countries and 28 EU countries. 

01/04/2014

EC

In the run up to the EU-Africa Summit, President Barroso welcomes today several African leaders.

He met the President of Cape Verde, Jorge Carlos Fonseca, the Prime-minister of São Tomé and Príncipe, Gabriel Costa, and the Vice-President of Angola, Manuel Domingos Vicente (three leaders from Portuguese-speaking African countries) for a working lunch.

President Barroso also has bilateral meetings this afternoon with the President of Mozambique, Armando Guebuza, the President of Zambia, Michael Chilufya Sata, the President of Ghana John Dramani Mahama and the President of Mali, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta. The 4th EU-Africa Summit will deepen the strong ties between the European Union and Africa and will mark a significant step forward for the relations between the two continents. The economy - including investment, growth and jobs – together with peace and security will be the key issues to be discussed in the summit.