Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis receives Slovenian foreign minister in Riehen (BS)
Riehen (BS), 21.02.2023 - The head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA), Ignazio Cassis, received Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia, Deputy Prime Minister Tanja Fajon in Riehen (Basel-Stadt). Their discussions focused on the war in Ukraine, the work of the UN Security Council, Switzerland's European policy and the excellent bilateral relations between Switzerland and Slovenia.
Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis expressed great concern about the disastrous consequences of Russia's military aggression for the people in Ukraine. He reaffirmed Switzerland's solidarity with Ukraine and its European partners, and its efforts to assist the Ukrainian population.
Security Council and European dossier at the heart of the talks
Slovenia is a candidate for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for 2024–25. The head of the FDFA mentioned the potential for cooperation and exchanges of experience with Switzerland if Ukraine's term were to coincide with Switzerland's. Switzerland will be a member of this core body of the international system until the end of 2024.
During the talks, Mr Cassis also gave the Slovenian deputy prime minister an update on the status of exploratory talks with the EU. The exploratory talks are to determine whether there is a sufficiently solid basis for negotiation.
Strong partnership between Switzerland and Slovenia
During the official visit, the two ministers emphasised the strong relations that unite their countries in the economic, scientific and environmental sectors. Following several years of rapid trade growth, Switzerland has become Slovenia's most important economic partner, with trade amounting to over CHF 18 billion in 2022. The two countries are currently negotiating an agreement for the implementation of the second Swiss contribution. The Swiss contribution will also benefit Slovenia, enabling renewable energy projects in the Slovenian Alps.
Prior to the meeting, Tanja Fajon also paid a courtesy visit to the president of the National Council, Martin Candinas.
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