Czech PM held talks with President of the European Council Charles Michel – here’s what was discussed

Czech Republic's Prime Minister Petr Fiala, front left, welcomes European Council President Charles Michel, right, for a meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)
By Karolina Klaskova
3 Min Read

Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala held talks with President of the European Council Charles Michel on Thursday where the two leaders discussed the upcoming Czech presidency of the European Council and the energy crisis.

The pair met at the Straka Academy on Thursday morning, where the Czech prime minister told Michel that his country needed nuclear power to be considered a clean resource.

“We believe it is crucial having nuclear power, as a clean, supported resource. We consider it important that gas is the temporary source,” said Fiala.

According to Fiala, Czechia also wants to develop renewable energy sources to a much greater extent than before.

“For example, we are talking about photovoltaics on the roofs of public buildings or private homes,” he said.

On the matter of the Czech presidency of the European Council later this year, Fiala and Michel discussed possible dates for an informal summit in the Czech Republic at which they could prepare plans more thoroughly.

The presidency budget should also be discussed, the pair concluded. In August, the previous government increased the presidency’s budget by 200 million korunas (€8.2 million) to 1.4 billion korunas (€57.2 million). According to Fiala, the new government is ready to add even more funds to the budget.

Fiala acknowledged the importance of good relations with the other members of the Visegrád Group, but according to him, this should not be the only cooperation between the Czech Republic within the EU.

“We want to find good relations with other European countries, be an active player in the EU, create interest coalitions on topics that are important for the Czech Republic and where we agree with other European countries,” Fiala told reporters.

Michel spoke at a press conference on key European priorities. He mentioned the consolidation of the EU based on freedoms and democratic values, the issue of energy, digital transformation, and climate policy, but also the need to discuss strengthening European security.

“NATO is a key element of European security, but we should also strengthen our own European possibilities and capabilities so that we can defend our stability and security,” the President of the European Council said.

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