Croatian Member of the European Parliament and Rapporteur for EU Relations with the United States Tonino Picula went on a one-week official working visit to the US, ahead of the European Parliament plenary session where Picula's Report on the Future of EU-US Relations will be a key debate in the plenary session.
“The need for strengthening the autonomy of the European Union, within the existing framework of NATO, the consequences of the failure in Afghanistan, a clearer definition of undertakings in relations to China and Russia, the situation on the Western Balkans, and defense and security in a broader sense, as well as the primary issue of a joint fight against climate changes are the topics we put most emphasis on over the next week. I believe that during these visits we will get a better picture of our partners' expectations, but our guidelines for the future of relations with Washington are almost completely outlined,” Picula pointed out.
During the working visit to Washington from Monday to Friday, the MEP will meet the representatives of the Congress and the Senate, the State Department, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and significant scientific institutes that work on transatlantic relations. On this occasion, Picula will also talk with Molly Montgomery, the Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, Representatives Joe Wilson, Jim Costa, Doug Lamborn, William Keating, Brian Fitzpatrick and Brendan Boyle, Members of the Subcommittee on Europe, Energy, Environment and Cyber.
Picula will speak with Jacob Poushter, director of the Pew Research Center, Jan Surotchak, senior director of transatlantic strategy at the International Republican Institute, as well as representatives of the EU delegation in Washington, Dearbhl Doyle, Head of the Political, Security and Development Section,and Mercedes Garcia Perez, Head of the Global Issues and Innovation Section. He will also be meeting with Marjorie Chorlins, senior vice president for Europe at the American Chamber of Commerce, as well as with Croatian Ambassador to Washington Pierre Simunovic.
At the World Bank, he will speak with Xiaoqing Yu, Director for Strategy and Business in Europe and Central Asia, Jerry Leb, Western Balkans Program Coordinator, and Steven Jouy, EU Program Coordinator, while at the International Monetary Fund, he will talk with the Western Balkans Deputy Director Joerg Decressin.