Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian held a videoconference yesterday with his Portuguese counterpart, Augusto Santos Silva.
The two ministers stressed the importance of a strong, solidarity-based European response to the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic for the European economy. This requires an ambitious European recovery plan and a revised future European budget that are consistent with the priority the EU gives to the ecological and digital transitions. They underscored the need for European coordination in the implementation of strategies to end lockdowns and reopen borders.
Jean-Yves Le Drian and his counterpart emphasized the importance of multidimensional support for Africa in the fight against the pandemic and the priority need to strengthen the partnership between the EU and Africa in this regard. They discussed the situation in the Sahel.
They agreed to continue consulting closely on all of these issues and on the preparation of the Portuguese and French presidencies of the European Union Council in 2021 and 2022, in particular during an upcoming visit by the minister to Lisbon.
Mr. Le Drian and his counterpart stressed the excellence of our bilateral relationship and exchanged views on prospects for the French-Portuguese cross-cultural events agreed to in principle in July 2018.