Slovakia, CzechRep plan joint air defence, better road connection


24.04.2014 14:50

Skalica - Slovakia and the Czech Republic want to jointly protect the two countries´ airspace, improve mutual road connection and cooperate in fighting tax evasion, the Slovak and Czech cabinets agreed at a joint meeting in Slovakia today, they said in a resolution.


Premiéři Bohuslav Sobotka (uprostřed) a Robert Fico (vpravo) 24. dubna na společném zasedání vlád ČR a Slovenska ve Skalici. ČTK Šálek Václav

"The two governments have asked their respective defence ministers to draft enable the launch of joint, integrated Czech-Slovak airspace protection," says the resolution signed by Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-Social Democrats) and his Czech counterpart Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD).

The cabinets also agreed on organising a joint exercise of the air force´s ground staff aimed to train them servicing the other country´s aircraft.

The Czech air force uses Gripen fighters leased from Sweden. Slovakia has Russian-made MiG-29s but it is planning a tender for the lease of fighters.

Both Slovakia and the Czech Republic want to jointly buy radars and light hand weapons.

"We are discussing ways for us to proceed jointly with acquisitions, as this...would be effective for both countries," Czech Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky (ANO) told CTK.

Stropnicky and his Slovak counterpart, Martin Glvac (Smer-SD), signed a protocol based on which joint exercises of the two armies´ elite units could take place in future.

The two cabinets said the enhancing of the road connection is of a big importance as it would speed up the traffic between their countries.

The priority goal is the building of a new road from western Slovakia´s Puchov to the Czech Republic and a road connecting northwestern Slovakia with with the northeast of Moravia.

The two countries support the development of nuclear energy, the joint declaration says.

"The governments of the Czech and Slovak Republics have agreed that nuclear energy will continue playing a very important role in [humans´] striving for climate-related goals," they write.

The two finance ministries plan to exchange experience in the tax area with the aim to improve the collection of taxes and prevent tax evasion.

"The measures Slovakia has introduced within its fight against tax fraud are inspirative for the Czech government," the two ministers agreed.

Bratislava in the past years tightened the conditions for entrepreneurs handling automatic cash registers and introduced a receipt lottery.

The two foreign ministers, Czech Lubomir Zaoralek (CSSD) and Slovak Miroslav Lajcak (unaffiliated), signed a protocol on their ministries´ cooperation including bilateral consultations.

The tradition of join meetings of the governments of the Czech Republic and Slovakia, which formed one state between 1918 and 1992, was established under the previous right-wing governments in 2012. This was the second such meeting. The next one will be hosted by the Czech Republic next year.

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