Spanish Foreign Minister to Visit Zagreb

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, May 27, 2019 – Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell, who will pay an official visit to Croatia on Tuesday and Wednesday, told Hina on Monday that he was coming to give an additional boost to the good relations between Spain and Croatia.

I believe that institutional contact at different levels should be expanded to enhance coordination and cooperation so as to make the most of the partnership potential, Borrell said.

The 72-year-old member of Spain’s Socialist government will arrive in Zagreb on Tuesday and will conduct most of his meetings with senior Croatian officials on the following day.

Borrell said that he would meet with Foreign Minister Marija Pejčinović Burić, President Kolinda Grabar-KItarović, Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandroković.

The talks will focus on the bilateral agenda, the EU agenda and on foreign affairs, said the Spanish minister.

Borrell is the first Spanish foreign minister to visit Croatia after 14 years. He is visiting Zagreb 13 days after Catalan Foreign Minister Alfred Bosch visited the Croatian capital.

On 15 May, the first stop of Bosch’s visit was the northern town of Varaždin where he met with Varaždin County head Radimir Čačić, with whom he discussed cooperation in the sectors of industry, trade, health tourism and education. Čačić said on that occasion that he was surprised that Croatia’s top state officials would not meet with the Catalan official, who came with a Catalan government delegation for a working visit.

The Catalan government in February opened its representation in Zagreb covering Southeast Europe.

Bosch’s visit to Croatia was the first visit of a Catalan government official to this part of Europe after Catalonia in 2017 held a referendum on independence despite a ban by the Spanish Constitutional Court. Twelve officials of the former government were charged with rebellion and misuse of public funds and have been on trial in Madrid.

Parliamentary elections were held in Spain on April 28 after which strained relations between Madrid and Barcelona became evident again.

Borrell is a minister in Spain’s incumbent caretaker government and he was a candidate of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) in Sunday’s elections for the European Parliament in which the party won 20 of 54 seats allocated to Spain.

Talks on government formation are expected in the coming weeks. The PSOE has won the 28 April parliamentary election, having secured 123 or 350 seats in the Spanish parliament and is set to hold talks with smaller parties on government formation, which requires 176 parliamentary seats.

Spain has been a member of NATO since 1982 and of the EU since 1986.

More news about relations between Croatia and Spain can be found in the Politics section.


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