Minister Skinnari to attend informal meeting of EU trade ministers in Marseille
On 13–14 February, Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari will attend an informal meeting of EU trade ministers in Marseille, France.
The meeting will focus on the trade and investment relations between the EU and Africa and on preparations for the next meeting of the EU–US Trade and Technology Council.
In connection with the meeting, the ministers will also have an opportunity for informal discussions with Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the World Trade Organization WTO, and Bernd Lange, Chair of the European Parliament Committee on International Trade. The ministers will also hear an update on the trade dispute between Lithuania and China.
According to Minister Skinnari, it is important for the EU to build an equal partnership with Africa. The discussions of the ministers will be conducted in advance of the European Union–African Union summit to be held on 17–18 February.
“Deepening the trade and investment relations is an integral part of the partnership between the EU and Africa. It is important to support the acceleration of Africa's economic integration. Finland also supports the development and deepening of Economic Partnership Agreements with African countries,” Skinnari says.
Minister Skinnari considers the EU–US Trade and Technology Council, launched last year, to be a good forum for promoting the common goals of the EU and the United States. The next meeting of the Council is scheduled to take place in Europe this spring.
“Key issues for Finland in this cooperation are technological standards, 5G and 6G, climate, and green technology, for example. It is also important that we engage in dialogue with the United States on the challenges of global trade,” Skinnari says.
Juha Niemi, Diplomatic Adviser to the Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade, tel. +358 50 478 1387, and Ilkka-Pekka Similä, Director General, tel. +358 50 336 3856.