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Austrian ambassador remarks on ‘long-standing friendship’ on national day

By JT - Oct 27,2022 - Last updated at Oct 30,2022

Austrian Ambassador to Jordan Oskar Wustinger (Photo courtesy of Austrian Embassy)

AMMAN — On the occasion of Austrian Independence Day, celebrated annually on October 26, Austrian Ambassador to Jordan Oskar Wustinger spoke on the “long-standing friendship” between the two countries, noting that next year will mark the 70th anniversary of “excellent” diplomatic relations.

The ambassador mentioned that in April both states’ Foreign Ministers signed a Memoandum of Understanding (MoU) on political and security policy cooperation, which was proposed by his Majesty King Abdullah on a visit to Austria one year prior. Soon, Wustinger said, there will be the first meeting in implementation of the MoU, according to a statement from the Austrian embassy.

On economic relations, the ambassador noted that “after a difficult year 2020 due to Corona, economic relations between our two countries have already improved significantly with a further substantial growth in 2022,” adding that both trade from Austria to Jordan and Jordanian exports to Austria have improved. The ambassador also mentioned that an Austrian tourism business delegation visited Jordan in May, and three weeks ago, a Jordanian delegation of importers was sent to Vienna. A group of Austrian tech companies are set to participate at the MENA ICT Forum at the Dead Sea in November, he added.

In terms of cultural cooperation and exchange, the ambassador noted that there have been several Austrian cultural demonstrations in Jordan, including Concerts by the Vienna Boys’ Choir, the first Austrian participation at the Amman Jazz Festival, the first Austrian Film Days held in cooperation with the Royal Film Commission, among other activities.

Austria also finances the Amman Green City Action Plan, which strategically addresses the city’s needs for sustainable growth and key issues including solid waste management, reducing pollution and energy consumption, the ambassador said.

In the security field, he mentioned that the Austrian special police forces and the Austrian army currently training in the Kingdom alongside their Jordanian counterparts, adding that these regular exercises are highly valued.

Wustinger said that at the international level, Austria and Jordan share the same overall objective, which is the strengthening of multilateral diplomacy. An effective multilateral system with the United Nations at its core is the preferred way to address global issues, as support for the UN has been a key principle of Austrian foreign policy since 1955, he added.

The ambassador went on to condemn Russian aggression against Ukraine, noting that Austria is in full solidarity with Ukraine. He noted that through weaponising food and energy, Russia has created a “triple crisis” of energy, nutrition and finance.  

Wuestinger commended Jordan’s hosting of large numbers of refugees, stating that “Jordan’s extraordinary efforts, generosity and hospitality are truly impressive”.

Austria will continue to support the resilience of the Jordanian people and the refugees, he said with a special focus on vulnerable groups, especially women and youth.

The ambassador also noted with regards to the Palestinian issue, his country is “fully committed” to a two-state solution based on international law, adding that Austria maintains an “intensive cooperation programme” with the Palestinian Authority, UNRWA and other development organisations.  

Finally, the ambassador expressed Austria’s appreciation for the “moderating, stabilising and constructive role” Jordan plays in the region, noting that a “safe and prosperous Jordan” is important. 

 

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