Minister for Foreign and European Affairs Evarist Bartolo had a virtual meeting with the United Kingdom Minister of State, Lord Frost CMG. The two ministers spoke on various topics including economic recovery and tourism following the COVID-19 pandemic, and on facilitating travel between both countries, which are at an advanced stage of their respective vaccination programmes.
On BREXIT, the ministers expressed their mutual commitment to continue to seek the best relations between Malta and the UK, both at the European as well as the international level. They agreed to work together to strengthen investment and trade between the two countries in various fields, including financial services and the digital economy.
Similarly, they agreed to strengthen ties in the fields of health and education, which go back many years and are firmly rooted among the citizens of both countries. In this context, the ministers reiterated their commitment to continue to protect the mutual interest of their citizens who are living, working, or studying in Malta or the United Kingdom.
The ministers also agreed to continue to cooperate and strengthen their cooperation in the fight against all forms of organised crime, and to work together for security in the Mediterranean and beyond.
The talks also focused on the institutional reforms that Malta is implementing, including the abolition of criminal libel, which has further strengthened freedom of speech in Malta. In this regard, Minister Bartolo said that Malta had joined the Media Freedom Coalition launched by the United Kingdom, and reiterated the government’s commitment to continue to carry out the necessary reforms to strengthen the rule of law.
The Commissioner for Malta-UK Commercial Relations, Dr Mario Vella, also participated in the meeting.