Czech President Zeman, foreign minister debate economic diplomacy


12.04.2014 18:33

Prague/Lany - Czech foreign policy and "economic diplomacy" were debated by President Milos Zeman, his advisers, Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek and Trade and Industry Minister Ivan Mladek today, Zeman´s spokesman Jiri Ovcacek has told CTK.


Prezident Miloš Zeman poskytl 9. dubna na Pražském hradě rozhovor ČTK u příležitosti 10. výročí vstupu České republiky do Evropské unie. ČTK Šimánek Vít

Also attending the meeting held at the presidential chateau in Lany was Zaoralek´s predecessor Ivan Kohout.

All three ministers are members of the Czech Social Democratic Party (CSSD).

In an interview with CTK on Wednesday, Zeman said he is not satisfied with Czech economic diplomacy.

He said the country should also trade with states that are criticised over the state of human rights. Zeman said he will inform the ministers of his objections when he comes to a government meeting, most likely in May.

"I am not satisfied with real economic diplomacy's performance, with how we are trying to gain new markets, how completely nonsensical obstacles emerge from time to time either in the form of duties, visas or otherwise. Politics should remove barriers," Zeman said.

He said economic diplomacy must be united and certain ideological barriers that hamper it removed.

Zeman provoked a debate in early March with his statement that the Czech Republic should not threaten exports and investments by its firms by overemphasising human rights protection. He gave Uzbekistan and Iran as examples of such countries.

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