The Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares, yesterday attended the swearing in of the Secretary General of the European Union, Pascual Navarro, at the Palacio de Santa Cruz, a post that has been recovered to prepare for the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2023.
Five recently appointed Directors-General also took up their posts. They are the Director General for Foreign and Security Policy, Federico de Torres Muro; the Director General for Africa, Alicia Rico Pérez del Pulgar; the Director General for Economic Diplomacy, Ana Esmeralda Martínez Sáez; the Director General for Integration and Coordination of General Affairs of the European Union, Salvador Rueda Rabanal; and the Director General for Coordination of the Internal Market and other Community Policies, María Dolores Lledó Laredo.
Albares spoke to point out that Spain has a double soul – a Euro-American and a European soul – and that the recovery of the General Secretariat of the EU, which existed ten years ago, seeks to respond to the challenge of strengthening Europe at a time, he said, when we are facing the challenge of the Presidency “when we have to build the digital Europe, the green Europe, the social Europe, that we need, as has become clear with the COVID”.
But also,” he added, addressing the new Director General for Foreign and Security Policy, “we have before us the NATO Summit of 2022, where a new strategic concept will be adopted, and therein lies the challenge of our security in the future, ours and that of our allies. Our role will be central and fundamental.
He also alluded to the trip he made to Algeria on Thursday, in which the new Director General for Economic Diplomacy took part, stressing that the objective of guaranteeing the supply of Spanish gas was achieved, and assured that the Ministry will continue to “defend the interests of Spanish companies, whatever their size, because behind them are Spanish men and women and quality employment”.
As for Sub-Saharan Africa, he indicated that it is an area that is far away in our minds, but we do not realise that they are our neighbours, and he stated that we must focus on irregular immigration, but not only on that aspect, but also on the potential of the region.