President Pahor on an official visit to the Republic of Austria

Vienna, 13. 6. 2019 | press release

At the invitation of the President of the Republic of Austria, Dr Alexander Van der Bellen, the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Borut Pahor, is on an official visit to the Republic of Austria. This is the second official meeting of the presidents within the framework of ongoing regular dialogue at the presidential level.

President Pahor and Federal President Van der Bellen affirm excellent relations between the countries in Vienna and speak in favour of a joint commemoration of the one hundredth anniversary of the Carinthian Plebiscite
Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

As part of the official visit, President Pahor met his host, President Van der Bellen, and he will also meet Dr Brigitte Bierlein, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, and mag. Wolfgang Sobotka, President of the National Council of the Republic of Austria.

During bilateral discussions, President Pahor and President Van der Bellen reviewed bilateral cooperation and confirmed that relations between the countries were excellent. The countries maintain a regular and very diversified dialogue at the political level and in numerous work fields; economic cooperation is also very good. The Republic of Austria is the largest investor in the Slovenian economy, supplies the second-largest number of tourists visiting Slovenia and is the nation’s third most important trading partner.

President Pahor and Federal President Van der Bellen affirm excellent relations between the countries in Vienna and speak in favour of a joint commemoration of the one hundredth anniversary of the Carinthian Plebiscite
Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

The Austrian President congratulated President Pahor for successfully hosting the Three Seas Initiative Summit, which gathered heads of state in Slovenia last week. He commended the start of the year of neighbourly dialogue, which will bring both countries even closer this autumn, and spoke in favour of cooperation that will contribute to better familiarity with, and understanding of, both cultures and nations.

The presidents commended the new positive recommendation of the European Commission to start negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania and supported further enlargement of the European Union. They exchanged information about the summit of the leaders of the Brdo–Brijuni Process taking place in Tirana in May and called for an active and responsible role of the European Union in the region, which would contribute to prompt reforms and necessary transformation in the Western Balkans.

President Pahor and Federal President Van der Bellen affirm excellent relations between the countries in Vienna and speak in favour of a joint commemoration of the one hundredth anniversary of the Carinthian Plebiscite
Photo: Daniel Novakovič/STA

As part of the official visit, President Pahor also met the representatives of the Slovenian minority in the Republic of Austria in the evening. The discussion partners agreed that cooperation at the federal and provincial levels has improved, but they highlighted several burning issues, particularly relating to culture and education, which President Pahor also pointed out during his talks with the Austrian President. The evening before the start of the official visit, President Pahor attended a reception organised by the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in Vienna on the occasion of Statehood Day. In his address, President Pahor again emphasised excellent versatile relations between both countries, which would be continued in the light of good neighbourly cooperation. He congratulated everyone in attendance on the forthcoming Statehood Day and stressed that this holiday would be celebrated with pride in Slovenia.