Western Balkans – G7 – Catherine Colonna’s trip to Germany (3-4 November 2022)


Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Catherine Colonna will travel to Germany for the Berlin Process summit and the G7 Foreign Ministers meeting on November 3 and 4.

At the opening of the Berlin Process Summit for the Western Balkans on November 3, the minister will reaffirm our support for this initiative. Not only has it fostered a rapprochement between the EU and the region, it has enabled Europe and the six countries of the Western Balkans to establish key collaborative projects: coordinated efforts to combat small arms and light weapons, on the security front; the establishment of the Regional Youth Cooperation Office; and support for infrastructure development.

Against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, the Berlin meeting will address such key issues for the Western Balkans as EU energy solidarity. The minister will also reiterate our country’s commitment to new initiatives such as the establishment of a regional center to expand cybersecurity capacity in Montenegro.

Ms. Colonna will also express our support for the creation of a regional common market in the Western Balkans.

On the same day, she will travel to Münster for the G7 Foreign Ministers meeting on November 3 and 4.

This meeting is being held against the backdrop of Russia’s continuing war of aggression against Ukraine and the global consequences of that war. The G7 will reiterate its united, unwavering support for Ukraine in the face of Russia’s war of aggression, especially during Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba’s virtual participation in some of the talks. Coming on the heels of President Macron’s November 1st telephone call with President Zelensky, the meeting will highlight our joint efforts to help Ukraine cope with the upcoming winter, as well as our military, financial, diplomatic and legal support for the fight against impunity. The French and Ukrainian presidents announced that that topic would be the focus of an international conference in Paris on December 13.

The foreign ministers of Kenya and Ghana will attend a portion of the G7 meeting, as will the deputy chairperson of the African Union Commission, who will be in Münster to make further progress on joint responses to the strategic challenges and regional crises facing the African continent. During these discussions, the minister will reiterate France’s commitment to our African partners regarding stability in Africa, particularly the Sahel. She will also note that France and the G7 intend to continue their efforts to mitigate the repercussions of the war instigated by Russia on food security and global imbalances, which are hitting the most vulnerable countries the hardest.

Lastly, the G7 ministers will address security challenges in the Indo-Pacific, particularly in the Strait of Taiwan, and the destabilizing actions of North Korea. They will discuss their coordinated efforts in regard to Iran’s destabilizing behavior, both regionally and internationally, including Iran’s facilitation of Russian war crimes and the escalation of its nuclear program, given its refusal to finalize the agreement on returning to the JCPoA. They will also consult on how best to support the Iranian people as they exercise their legitimate rights in the face of the Iranian authorities’ relentless crackdown. And they will address the geopolitical situation in Central Asia.

During her visit, the minister will also hold bilateral talks with several of her counterparts.