Check against delivery!
It has been an honour for me to be received by the Prime Minister [Saad Hariri] in my first visit since the government was formed - very important and encouraging developments - I was visiting Lebanon less than one year ago and many things have changed and for good.
So we had an excellent meeting tonight, discussing first of all the European Union’s support to Lebanon, to all the Lebanese people, to their institutions, and the common work we can do to make sure that this new political and institutional environment in Lebanon gets all the support it deserves and it needs.
We know very well the threats, the challenges, the difficulties but also the enthusiasm and the energy of the Lebanese people, of the Lebanese institutions and this is why we want to invest even more in their stability and in getting results for the Lebanese people.
We discussed, as I said, our support, the support that the European Union is giving to Lebanon, in particular in two fields: the efforts that Lebanese have been doing now for so many years in hosting so many Syrians in Lebanon, the investments in re-launching the economy in the country with investments and also the work we do together and that we can increase for security and counterterrorism.
In all of this, Lebanon is a strategic partner for the European Union. We intend to increase the level of our cooperation, we intend to increase also the level of our cooperation and exchanges on the many different regional dynamics that the European Union is following very closely, on which it is working.
We discussed tonight also of these regional dynamics, of the situation in Syria and in general terms of the ways in which we can cooperate more.
Let me finish by saying that Lebanon is a reason for hope, not only for Lebanon, not only for the region, but for Europe and for the entire world. Because in such a complicated and conflictual region and part of the world, with such a difficult story, Lebanon is showing to the rest of the world that living together is possible, working together is bringing results, and that different communities, different people can not only live together but also work together and deliver together.
And this is why we are so much encouraged by the work that Prime Minister Hariri and all his government are starting to do and I told him that he can count not only on my personal full support but also on the full support of the European Union in this difficult but exciting and very encouraging endeavour. Thank you very much.
Link to the video: http://ec.europa.eu/avservices/video/player.cfm?ref=I132794&sitelang=en