EU Ambassadors in the EP: a multilateral approach to global challenges needed

EU Ambassadors Conference 2018

Federica Mogherini participates at the EU Ambassadors Conference, August 2017 HRVP Federica Mogherini and EEAS Secretary General Mrs Helga Schmid

This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.

The EU must “engage with partners to enhance global peace, security and prosperity” Vice-President Ramón Luis Valcárcel told the 140 EU ambassadors on Tuesday.

European Parliament Vice-President Ramón Luis Valcárcel, on behalf of President Antonio Tajani, opened the 2018 EU Ambassadors Conference, bringing together the 140 EU ambassadors from all over the world.

The EU Ambassadors Conference takes place every year. This year, part of the event happened in the Parliament, where the ambassadors joined MEPs for a series of workshops and debates. The programme had a special focus on the upcoming European elections.

Vice-President Valcárcel said: “We are witnessing a new wave of populism across the world that is offering simplistic solutions of hate, xenophobia and protectionism, which are not compatible with strong global governance. At a time when multilateralism is being increasingly undermined, it is more important than ever for the European Union to stand strong and united in promoting a rules-based multilateral order.”

“We must act responsibly and engage with our partners to enhance global peace, security and prosperity through a stable and predictable international order.”

Four priority challenges for the EU

The workshops focused on four priorities: economic governance, climate change, migration and security.

The EP Vice-President said the EU has to defend free and fair trade based on the WTO, stressing that growth and jobs depend largely on an open global trading system. He then reminded listeners that the EP Plenary had called for “EU climate diplomacy” to integrate climate into all fields of external action, including trade, development cooperation and humanitarian aid.

Climate change has also a strong link with migration flows, since it “exacerbates the conditions that lead to migration in vulnerable areas”, he said. He praised a multilateral approach also to this challenge, with the aim of creating a more equitable global sharing of responsibility in dealing with migration movements.

“The EU needs to further boost its security and defence capabilities, as well as our means to prevent conflict, build peace and strengthen international security” he added, reminding listeners that Parliament had urged the Member States to commit to a common and autonomous European defence.

Vice-President Valcárcel concluded: “The European Union clearly has a key role to play in international governance and we must continue to push for global solutions to our common challenges. In order to fully achieve our potential, we need to be more ambitious and be united in speaking with one voice on the international scene.”

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