The background of the Mitsotaki-Biden meeting at the White House – The wide range of issues discussed by the two leaders
Of Dimitris Gatsiou
Government sources speak of a meeting between the Prime Minister and the President of the United States of America, which took place in a very good atmosphere.
Athens’ satisfaction with the results produced by the top four of Mitsotakis and Biden is widespread, while it is characteristic to point out that the American president is not only well acquainted with the issues of the Eastern Mediterranean, but also has strong positive feelings for the Greek-American community, which will play an important role in the bilateral relations between Athens and Washington.
At the meeting of Mr. Mitsotakis and Mr. Biden, all the critical issues of the geopolitical, energy, economic and investment agenda were discussed. At the same time, what keeps the Greek capital in a leading position is the fact that it was reaffirmed that our relations are at the best possible level.
In particular, according to government sources, the two leaders discussed at length the developments in Ukraine, with Europe and the United States of America being on a common front against Russia.
At the same time, in the energy sector, where there was an understanding, the ways of Europe’s independence from Russian gas were examined, with the Prime Minister focusing in detail on the important role that Alexandroupolis is called to play, without ruling out the Americans’ interest in investing in a major energy project. area.
Another important field of exchange of views of the two leaders was the American investments in Greece, but also the general role of our country, which has a special place in the debate on dealing with authoritarian regimes. According to government sources, our country has overcome the crisis and is coming to the fore stronger financially, but also institutionally.
On the front of national issues, Mr. Mitsotakis and Mr. Biden discussed the issue of Cyprus and at this point the Prime Minister, according to information, spoke… without chewing his words.
Mr. Biden seems to be fully aware of the country’s positions on this issue, while regarding the Greek-Turkish ones, they were discussed regionally and in the context of the developments in the Eastern Mediterranean.
According to information, during the specific discussion, Mr. Mitsotakis showed Mr. Biden the map of the “blue homeland”, while he also focused on the front of the overflights over the Greek islands.
“Everyone understands that revisionism has no place”, is the message sent by Athens. At the same time, government sources comment that it would be a mistake for Turkey to try to buy Finland and Sweden’s entry into NATO in exchange, as such a move is beyond the logic of the allies.
Defense cooperation was another area of discussion for Mr Mitsotakis and Mr Biden. Greece’s desire to join the F-35 program is a given in terms of their purchase, in order for this specific weapon to be the fifth generation fighter aircraft.
According to information, Greece will need an F-35 squadron, as the needs of the Air Force for the next 30 years are planned in detail on this road.
Athens sends the message that the best funding will be sought for a move that will come to the forefront from 2028 onwards, as then there will be the budgetary margin to be acquired.
According to information, Athens’s request to Washington is expected to be submitted immediately. Even in the summer, but it will be estimated, even two years until the final closing of the agreement.
At the same time, Greece could indirectly enter the co-production program of the aircraft, through the upcoming investment of Lockheed Martin in the Greek Aviation Industry.
The energy front
In the discussions of Mr. Mitsotakis and Mr. Biden, the energy sector dominated, as mentioned above, with the framework including the prices of natural gas, with the well-known positions of our country for a ceiling, as formulated by the Prime Minister.
The Greek capital continues to send messages to Europe about the need to support economies and citizens in the face of extreme increases in energy prices, about two weeks before the extraordinary summit of the “27” leaders of the European Union.
The government has supported households and businesses with the new national plan, but this does not negate the need for additional assistance from Europe. An aid either financially (by recycling loans from the Recovery Fund) or by a more drastic intervention in the gas market.
In the very front of the strategy for the transformation of the country into an energy hub, the goals are ambitious, as Athens wants not only to meet the needs of our country, but also of the Balkans and, why not of Eastern Europe.
The government and the prime minister are constantly expanding their moves on the energy chessboard and it is characteristic that Mr. Mitsotakis’s new advisor on energy issues is Nikos Tsafos. Specialist in energy geopolitics.
“We want to be a gateway and we are open to all options. But the market and the cost will determine how the gas will be transported,” said the Greek capital, with the United States declaring its support for the electricity interconnection strategy. with Egypt.
Regarding the Prime Minister’s speech today in the Congress, which is the second big milestone of Mr. Mitsotakis’s visit to the American capital, according to information, it will focus, among other things, on the special relationship between Greece and the United States of America.
Mr. Mitsotakis, no, will develop because our country plays an important role in the global debate on the resilience of the Republic.