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European and Australian Parliamentarians call for increased cooperation between the European Union and Australia

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30 May 1995

European and Australian Parliamentarians call for increased cooperation between the European Union and Australia

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During discussions in Canberra today, a European Parliamentary Delegation and the Australian Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade agreed to call for increased cooperation between the EU and Australia. The Joint Statement agreed upon by the two sides reads:


The Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade of the Parliament of Australia and the European Parliament Delegation for Relations with Australia, meeting in Canberra on 29 - 30 May 1995 on the occasion of the 18th EP/Australia Reciprocal Interparliamentary meeting:

welcomed the growing importance of the Australia/EU political and economic relationship

emphasised the importance of a regular dialogue aimed at exchanging information and experience on issues related to growth, competitiveness and employment and all matters of mutual interest

noted the co-operation which already exists between the two parties in a number of areas such as trade and investment, science and technology, wine, . environment, industry, development aid etc

noted the ongoing negotiations on a mutual recognition agreement and a veterinary agreement

considered that new means of co-operation should be developed in other fields such as education and training (educational and academic exchanges), competition policy, customs procedures and cultural exchanges -

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1. Welcome the decisions reached at the EC/Australia ministerial consultations which took place in Brussels on 15 May 1995 to begin work on shaping a more structured partnership between Australia and the European Union

2. Call upon the Council of Ministers of the Union, the European Commission and the Australian Government to take the appropriate measures to develop such a partnership, which should be aimed at meeting the challenges of the future

3. Decide to review the progress made towards these goals at the next EP/Australia Interparliamentary meeting to be held in the European Union in September/October 1995.

Hugh Kerr, Leader o f the European Parliamentary Delegation said: “The Joint Statement expresses the importance which members o f the European and Australian Parliaments attach to reinforcing and developing not only trade relations but also the political, cultural and research links which bring us together. I hope that the E U

Council o f Ministers will now act promptly to ensure that a framework agreement with Australia is concluded this year to give us the structures we need to meet the challenges o f the 21st century,

In further discussions, members o f both Parliaments condemned recent actions by Bosnian Serbs in kidnapping UN soldiers and observers and intensifying their offensive actions. They urged the immediate release o f hostages. Concerns were expressed

about the long-term consequences o f the current situation for UN peacekeeping operations.

The European Parliamentary delegation included:

. M r Hugh Kerr Chairman

. M r Karl-Heinz Florenz 1st Vice-Chairman

. Ms Astrid Lulling 2nd Vice-Chairman

. Mr Timo Juhani Jarvilahti . M r Alfonso Marra

. Ms Dagmar Roth-Behrendt

Enquiries: Roger Camilleri Ph: (06) 271 2777 Fax: (06) 273 4445