President discusses issues affecting EU with Irish and Croatian Presidents

President George Vella is in Rome where today he will joining non-executive Presidents from EU member states during a meeting of the Arraiolos Group. The event will bring together 15 Presidents. The Head of the Maltese State yesterday started  holding individual meetings with other Presidents.

On Tuesday morning President Vella held bilateral meetings with the President of Ireland,  Michael D Higgins. Higgins has been in this post since 2011 and is serving as the ninth President of Ireland.

He then met with the President of Croatia, Zoran Milanovic. Milanovic has been occupying this post since February 2020.  President Vella spoke to TVM about these two meetings.

“I obviously already knew the Irish President and with him I discussed the problems which have to do with Europe, the future of Europe as well as bilateral issues.  By the end of the year we are also planning for him to visit Malta in a state visit. We also spoke about subjects which will be discussed during the Arraiolos meeting. With the President of Croatia we also spoke about Europe’s problems, obviously as they see them from the point of view of a Balkan state, problems of immigration, as well as the fact they are contemplating to adopt the Euro in 2023, and the problems that brings with it.”

Today, President George Vella will take part in the 16th informal meeting of the Arraiolos Group at the Quirinale Palace in Rome, which is the residence of the Italian President of the Republic.

This meeting had started on the initiative of the former President of Portugal, Jorge Sampaio, in 2003 after the first meeting in the Portuguese city of Arraiolos.

For this official visit, President Vella is being accompanied by Mrs Vella and the Ambassador of Malta in Italy, Carmel Vassallo.