George Abela, the President of Malta arrived for a two-day state visit to Slovakia the evening of January 22. Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič will receive his guest at the presidential palace in Bratislava today.

This visit follows the first-ever state visit of the Slovak president to Malta in September 2011. It is expected confirm friendly relations between both countries and intensify bilateral relations and cooperation in international institutions.

“Last but not least, the visit should help intensify trade and economic cooperation between Slovakia and Malta,” Gašparovič’s spokesman Marek Trubač told the SITA newswire. “Both heads of state will also cover current topics on the European agenda and preparation for rotating presidency of both countries in the EU Council (Slovakia in the second half 2016, Malta in the first half of 2017).”

The visit takes place in the year of the tenth anniversary of the both countries European Union accession. Abela will be accompanied by Maltese Foreign Minister George Vella and a group of Maltese entrepreneurs.

The schedule of the visits also includes a Slovakia-Malta Business Forum and two documents will be signed, a Memorandum of Cooperation between the countries’ foreign ministries; and the Protocol on Cooperation between the Slovak Centre for International Legal Protection of Children and Youth and the Maltese Department of Social Standards of the Ministry of Family and Social Solidarity, on cooperation in inter-country adoption of children.

President Abela along with Gašparovič will also speak at an Economic Forum at the Slovak Foreign and European Affairs Ministry. President Abela will also meet with Prime Minister Robert Fico, the Speaker of Parliament Pavol Paška and Bratislava Mayor Milan Ftáčnik.

(Source: SITA)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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