Central Europe is sufficiently developed for Swiss aid to be downscaled and refocused on the Balkans, the foreign minister, Joseph Deiss told his Polish counterpart, Bronislaw Geremek. However, Deiss said environmental aid packages would continue.
Central Europe is sufficiently developed for Switzerland's aid programmes to be downscaled and refocused on the Balkans, the foreign minister, Joseph Deiss told his Polish counterpart, Bronislaw Geremek in Warsaw. However, Deiss said environmental aid packages would continue.
Deiss said Poland had received Sfr150 million in Swiss aid over the past ten years, but that aid programmes would now concentrate on the Balkans, where need was greater. Geremek said Berne had agreed to continue funding Polish environmental projects worth up to SFr10 million.
Geremek said that Switzerland and Poland were seeking to enhance their bilateral trade ties and narrow their trade deficit. "The current annual trade figure between our countries, about SFr1.4 billion, doesn't represent our real potential", he said.
Geremek invited Switzerland to increase its role in the Polish economy. Deiss said a Swiss delegation, including business leaders, was due in Poland in the Summer to discuss increasing investments.
After his discussions with Geremek, Deiss met Poland's prime minister, Jerzy Buzek, and the president, Aleksander Kwasniewski. He also visited an exhibition on Poles interned in Switzerland during the Second World War, and laid a wreath at Warsaw's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
swissinfo with agencies