Οn this important day, I call on the international community to step up efforts and reinforce cooperation. Only by acting together, we can truly ensure the safety and health of our citizens, in Europe and beyond.
The European Union and the United States have established unbreakable relations during the last decades and we shall continue working on that, deepening and enhancing our cooperation.
The report shows again that tackling drugs and drug addiction is a complex challenge. The nature, availability and addiction to drugs are a constantly evolving, multi-faceted threat to our citizens, our youth, and our societies overall. Drugs affect the lives of millions around the world.
We clearly have shared concerns and priorities: to protect and save lives, to safeguard human dignity and to promote well managed and organised mobility between our continents.
I wish to thank the Multinational Peace Support Operations Training Centre and the European Security and Defence College for organising this very timely and topical pilot course dedicated to Crisis response to Mass Migration and Refugees’ flows.
Today we are also seeing a concrete example of how the strengthened European Border and Coast Guard Agency can provide increased support to our neighbouring countries.
An effective and genuine Security Union is about ensuring that national authorities and EU Agencies can cooperate seamlessly by connecting the dots between our migration, border and security information systems. Today, we are putting in place a critical pillar of this project, giving border guards and police officers the right tools to protect European citizens
The EU Drugs Agency has become a genuine European hub of excellence on the increasingly transnational challenge of drug use and abuse, helping us make more informed and more effective policies at both national and EU level to counter the threats and harms associated with it.
I am happy to be back in Malta, this warm and welcoming, European nation. I would like to thank President Vella, Prime Minister Muscat, Minister of Foreign Affairs Abela, Minister of Home Affairs Farrugia, and Minister of European Affairs Dalli for their hospitality.
Lenghty and cumbersome procedures can deter tourists from travelling to Europe. This would deprive us of investment and spending, and affect negatively the EU’s economy.
I don't hide from you that I consider the European Border and Coast Guard one of my key proposals and essential element of a comprehensive migration policy. We have not only created, installed but not also strengthened the European Border and Coast Guard in in record time with our joint work and efforts.
Today, the European Parliament adopted two important Security Union legislative initiatives proposed by the Commission on interoperability and explosive precursors. These new measures will allow EU information systems for security, migration and border management to work together more intelligently and will strengthen EU rules on explosive precursors.
I am very glad to be here with you today to discuss one of the most important questions for the future and prosperity of the European Union: how we create more inclusive societies. If anyone would ask me what I think is one of the priorities for Europe in the decades to come, the successful inclusion of migrants in our societies would be it.