L-R: Jean Rottner, President of Grand Est regional council; Alexander de Croo, Belgian Prime Minister; Xavier Bettel, Luxembourg's Prime Minister; Mark Rutte, Dutch Prime Minister; Hendrik Wüst, Minister-President of North Rhine-Westphalia; Credit: SIP / Luc Deflorenne

On Monday 28 November 2022, Luxembourg hosted the BeNeLux Summit at Bourglinster Castle as part of its presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the BeNeLux Union.

The Luxembourg presidency focused in particular on three priorities: emerging stronger from the COVID-19 pandemic, promoting synergies with neighbouring regions and working for a green, safe and competitive BeNeLux.

Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel received his Dutch and Belgian counterparts, Mark Rutte and Alexander De Croo, respectively.

After the official welcome, the Prime Ministers met with the Secretary-General of BeNeLux.

During their working meeting, Prime Ministers Xavier Bettel, Mark Rutte and Alexander de Croo reaffirmed their commitment to even deeper cooperation between the BeNeLux countries and to deeper European integration.

Their thematic exchanges focused, among other things, on Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine and its consequences, such as the impact on the security of energy supplies within the European Union (EU). The prime ministers notably reaffirmed their full support for the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and highlighted that the BeNeLux countries are ready to work together to support the reconstruction of Ukraine in the coming years.

They stated: "As war has returned to our continent, our core European values ​​of democracy, human dignity and freedom have come into focus. We, the countries of the BeNeLux, will stand firm and promote European unity and solidarity".

During the working meeting, the heads of government also discussed current topics at European level such as migration, the Schengen area and the rule of law within the EU.

Part of the discussions included two neighbours, namely the Minister-President of North Rhine-Westphalia, Hendrik Wüst, and the President of the Greater Region Summit and President of the regional council of Grand Est, Jean Rottner. 

During this extended meeting, Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel stressed that synergy with neighbouring regions is an essential tool, as already specified in the priorities of the Luxembourg presidency. He went on to say that for the whole region, the transition to a sustainable, more resilient and reliable energy system is based on the development of renewable energies and security of supply, which is particularly important in this moment of uncertainty in terms of energy supply.

At the end of the working meetings, a press conference summarising the results of the summit took place with the participation of Xavier Bettel, Alexander de Croo, Mark Rutte, Hendrik Wüst and Jean Rottner.