MS: I personally requested that Prime Minister Mario Draghi should always take the scientific data into consideration. MS: Whatever vaccine is effective is welcome in Italy. It is completely nonsense to be able to verify, from March 31 till the end of April, specific restrictions about red and orange zones. I spoke with the President of the Veneto Region, Luca Zaia, and in the Veneto, they are distributing vaccines very fast, but now the main problem is that the original vaccine provisions are coming to an end and new doses are not arriving. Yesterday, I saw the updated data from the regions about the pandemic in Italy. NE: The lack of vaccines jabs in Italy and the EU is still an unresolved issue. I don’t know why the 1.5 million inhabitants of Sardinia should be forced to stay home and close up their shops for the entire month of April only because some only see red across the whole country. If in April, some regions should be classified in the yellow zone, then we must reopen them, What is at stake are thousands of jobs and the mental health of Italians. NE: What do you think about the possibility of locking all of Italy for the entire month of April as has been suggested by Health Minister Roberto Speranza? Matteo Salvini (MS): The top priories are the EU repatriation policy and border protection. Salvini came to Warsaw at the invitation of the Polish Interior Minister Joachim Brudzinski. By the end of the year, Italy-based production should be at full speed. Therefore, if this trend continues for the next several days, there is no way to justify extended lockdown closures after April 15. India is a very advanced country with regards its pharmaceutical research. The number of hospitalizations, ICUs and positive cases are all decreasing. Regarding the self-sufficiency of vaccines, Giancarlo Giorgetti, the Minister for Economic Development, is working to accelerate the production of vaccines in Italy. This is not the case now in terms of how it is being done. If today we could fuse together the European Conservatives and Reformists and Identity and Democracy groups, we could have the second biggest group in the parliament, a true alternative to the European People’s Party/Socialists and Democrats duo. When we’re talking about these two specific issues, we’re asking for “ more Europe “. If the data tells us that those specific areas should stay in the red zone, then restrictions need to be kept. Red is the color seen by bulls and Communists. However, if other areas in the country have good data in terms of positive cases and hospitalizations, they need to be put in the yellow zone. EPA-EFE/RADEK PIETRUSZKA POLAND OUT

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On two separate occasions prior to the Easter holiday, New Europe had the opportunity to meet with Matteo Salvini, the leader of Italy’s Lega party and the former deputy prime minister, in Rome to about a wide range of issues that included the EU’s immigration policy, management of the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines and a development plan for the south of Italy proposed by his party. Europe should only respect the existing pacts and let us continue to work on our own. MS: We haven’t asked for anything. For Example, I know that you have contacts with the Indian authorities. We’re not asking for money, just the right to the freedom to work. How can Europe help with this initiative and what are you asking the EU to do to help implement your plan? If so, and if we’re talking about immigration, what are your priorities at the EU level? style=”font-size:40px; line-height: 1.3em; font-weight: 800; padding:7px;”>INTERVIEW with Matteo Salvini: The European Union needs to reinvent itself and find a new soul

By Federico Grandesso
Italian Editor, Journalist

epa07271640 Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs of Italy Matteo Salvini attends a press conference at the Italian Embassy in Warsaw, Poland, 09 January 2019. For example, as of March 31, based on the most up-to-date data that we have, Sardinia could reopen. The EU should deliver on its promised numbers of vaccines and let Italian entrepreneurs, farmers, fishermen and researchers work without ridiculous regulations that block the further development of a company like Alitalia. The Italian politician also met with the leader of Poland’s ruling party Law and Justice (PiS) Jaroslaw Kaczynski. In some policy areas, we want the other members of the European Union to be able to decide for themselves on other issues, but on these two specific points, we think Europe should have a major role in terms of cooperation. I agree with what PM Draghi said – that we have to look at the scientific data. This issue should not be treated from an ideological point of view, but only one that is scientific and pragmatic. The political groups inside the European Parliament should seize the occasion and use it as a way to change. Speaking about a larger vision for the future of the European Union, I think after the COVID crisis, the EU needs to reinvent itself and find a new soul. NE: You’ve developed a plan to relaunch and support the development of Southern Italy. New Europe (NE): After your meeting with the prime ministers of Poland and Hungary, are you planning to found a new group in the European Parliament? Which of the other available vaccines could be interesting for you? We’re asking for a clear and logical system if it red we close but if the situation is good we must reopen. I would use the Indian vaccine tomorrow morning, if possible.

“We are pleased to help Kazakhstan develop its energy sector in line with the global decarbonisation agenda,” Renaud-Basso said. Kazakhstan’s Energy Minister Nurlan Nogayev and EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso signed the roadmap for the decarbonisation strategy on March 31. Today’s memorandum will shape our cooperation for years to come,” the Kazakh Energy Minister said. “Jointly, we search for innovative solutions to enable the sector’s sustainable development and this is an important foundation for our present and future work. “Our partnership in the area of sustainable energy began over a decade ago and, based on the country’s achievements to date, Kazakhstan is right on track to achieve the new ambitious target of carbon neutrality.”
For his part, Nogayev said longstanding cooperation with the EBRD is helping Kazakhstan achieve its development goals in the energy sector. style=”font-size:40px; line-height: 1.3em; font-weight: 800; padding:7px;”>EU backs Kazakhstan’s strategy to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060

By New Europe Online/KG

EPA-EFE/KHALED ELFIQI

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Hoping to become a regional renewable energy leader in Central Asia, Kazakhstan and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) have signed an accord to develop a long-term cooperation strategy to achieve carbon neutrality of the country’s power sector by 2060. The EBRD and Kazakhstan will cooperate, among other things, on the development of renewable energy and the carbon market, the enhancement of the electrical grid and the decommissioning of old thermal capacity, the Bank said, adding that the EBRD is committed to financing renewable energy projects implemented through an auction mechanism in order to promote competitive pricing and to stimulate investment in renewable energy. The EBRD is supporting the country’s renewable energy drive, with 14 projects worth $535 million financed to date.

On this occasion, we reaffirmed our strong support to Serbia’s accession process and expressed our willingness to continue to provide all possible assistance, both politically and at a technical level, for the fulfillment of this strategic objective,” Christodoulides said. They also agreed to meet every six months to talk about topics from several areas of interest to Serbia, Greece and Cyprus. “We also held a very open and constructive exchange of views on the latest developments in the Western Balkans, as well as on the European perspective of the countries in the region. Dendias met Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic and Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulidis in Belgrade on April 5. GREEK FOREIGN MINISTRY

Trade, tourism, energy, defense, transport deals wanted

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Focusing on close ties, the foreign ministers of Greece, Serbia and Cyprus discussed new opportunities for greater cooperation in energy, transport and tourism as well as developments in Eastern Mediterranean, Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said. “The priority for us is the implementation of the Joint Declaration that was signed in the context of the 3rd High-Level Cooperation Council, which took place in December 2019, in Athens. For his part, Selakovic said he discussed with his colleagues the European future of Serbia. Selakovic pointed out that they also discussed economic cooperation, infrastructure, strengthening ties, energy, gas supply from various sources and various routes, and pointed out that the main goal of Serbia in regional policy is to preserve peace and stability. Drawing on the experience of such formations with other countries I am certain, that our contacts and cooperation in the near future will be intensified at all levels, so that further tangible results will emerge in specific areas in the very near future,” Christodoulides said. But we look forward to implementing it as soon as conditions allow,” Dendias said after his meeting with his Serbian counterpart. After the joint meeting between Cyprus, Greece and Serbia, Christodoulides said the three ministers had the opportunity to review the prospects for further strengthening the existing strong bonds of friendship and cooperation between the three countries. “We want our economic and trade relations to grow and deepen, along with our cooperation in important sectors such as energy and defence. “Strengthening our economic cooperation through joint actions that can stem from the implementation of our strategy for economic diplomacy, was also discussed given the strong prospects for cooperation in this area, and we agreed to organize a Forum that will bring our business communities together,” he said. In the context of the European perspective, he reiterated Greece’s undivided support for Serbia’s European perspective. Unfortunately, the pandemic blocked its full implementation. He added that the ministers agreed that greater cooperation is needed in the field of tourism, agriculture, and the IT sector. “As I said in our meeting, I intend to travel to Ankara in the immediate future, next week, under the condition, of course, that the right climate exists. Monitoring Turkey’s actions in the region
The Greek Foreign Minister said Greece is also monitoring Turkey’s intentions in their wider region and the effort it is making to use economic, religious and cultural means to affiliate itself with countries in the region, and especially with the Muslim population. “Our goal is none other than the creation and promotion of a positive agenda, for the benefit of our peoples, with the overarching goal of enhancing stability and prosperity in the wider region of the Western Balkans and the Eastern Mediterranean. Regarding energy, we discussed how to enhance connectivity between the countries in the region. Cyprus issue
Christodoulides also briefed his colleagues on the latest developments on the Cyprus issue, in view of the informal Conference to be convened at the end of the month in Geneva. The Cypriot Foreign Minister said they discussed energy issues and ways of cooperation, taking into account Serbia’s interest in energy developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, as manifested by the country’s participation in a recent meeting in the framework of energy cooperation between Cyprus, Greece and Israel. So, we hope that, this time, the Turkish side will abstain from such actions,” Dendias said. style=”font-size:40px; line-height: 1.3em; font-weight: 800; padding:7px;”>A Bridge Not Too Far: Connecting Serbia-Greece-Cyprus

By Kostis Geropoulos
Energy & Russian Affairs Editor, New Europe

Greece’s Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic and Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulidis meet in Belgrade, Serbia, April 5, 2021. “The sole goal is the resumption of substantive negotiations from the point where negotiations stopped at Crans Montana, to reach a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem that will really reunite the country on the basis of a bizonal bicommunal federation, in line with relevant UN Security Council resolutions and EU law, values ​​and principles, without anachronistic systems and structures that have no place in the 21st century,” Christodoulides said, adding that, at the same time, the EU’s meaningful participation in the discussions on resolving the Cyprus problem, as well as the existence of a climate conducive to a solution, without provocative statements and actions, either on land or at sea, are essential components for a successful outcome of the ongoing effort. And with regard to transport, I proposed – and I thank you for accepting this – a trilateral meeting between us and North Macedonia to discuss connectivity in our region,” Dendias said. He also reiterated his support for the sovereignty of Cyprus and also gave his support for the continuation of the dialogue between Nicosia and Ankara. Under the condition that Turkey does not proceed to provocative actions that will block my visit. “This is an issue that we are always monitoring carefully,” he said. Selakovic thanked Greece and Cyprus for their principled support in preserving the sovereignty and integrity of Serbia, but also in terms of European integration, and pointed out that Serbia supports Greece in continuing the dialogue with Turkey.