Valerijus Simulik addressed the 54th plenary session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation in his capacity as President of the Baltic Sea Parliamentary Conference and at the same time in his position as Vice-President of the Baltic Assembly.
He underlined the close cooperation between the BSPC and the PABSEC – marked by the joint memorandum of understanding, the regular mutual participation in each other Parliamentary Assemblies in recent years, as well as the intensive consultation of both Standing Committees on safeguarding the oceans in April this year in Istanbul.
In particular, Valerijus Simulik emphasised:
“Our Baltic and Black Seas are distant by geographical location, but the efforts of our organisations are close in aims and mission. We share a similar vision that parliaments have a significant role in ensuring peace and security in the region, the rule of law, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, as well as promoting economic, cultural and educational cooperation between states.
Our regional organisations are an excellent platform for discussions and problem solving for a long-term perspective. We have proven to be an effective framework for promoting development and growth in our regions.
I firmly believe that regional institutions have a significant role in solving regional and global problems, as well as promoting economic growth. We all know that quite often the answer for single country challenges can be solved with a regional approach. We cannot mitigate climate change, and we cannot fight against organised crime, and we cannot deal with cyber threats only with the resources of a single country. Joining of forces is very important.”
He furthermore informed the PABSEC about the main topics of the 28thBSPC in Oslo: The visions of the Baltic Sea countries on the future of working life and the jointly discussed issue of safeguarding the oceans: ”We addressed far-reaching calls for action to our governments on these issues and also discussed migration and integration°. He also pointed out the main BSPC issues for the upcoming year:
“Our Lithuanian presidency isgrounded on four main priorities:
- First, Innovation drift by science and technology;
- Second, Improving digital cooperation: On the way to Digital Baltic;
- Third, Peaceful and reliable neighbourliness as well as intense cooperation;
- And fourthly, Migration and integration, finding solutions based on mutual information and best practices.
We will work to boost innovation through science and technology to achieve better-added value in economic and social development. We need innovative impulses not only to increase our prosperity but also to protect our climate.”
In the margins of the session, BSPC President and BSPC Secretary General discussed possibilities for joint consultations and further activities with PABSEC representatives.