U.K. Foreign Secretary William Hague said the United Kingdom will work with its European partners over the coming months on the need for the EU to remove barriers to trade, to complete the single market, to conclude free trade agreements around the world.
In his remarks after a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Mr. Hague said the United States of America is closest and indispensible ally in foreign policy.
“As everyone knows, we’ve had in 2011 a momentous year in world affairs, and I think we’ve risen to these challenges with confidence. Our joint efforts in Libya, for instance, to save lives benefitted from the seamless cooperation in diplomacy and in defense, which is one of the distinctive hallmarks of the relationship between the United Kingdom and the United States of America.” -Mr. Hague
He noted that 2012 is set to throw up challenges in foreign policy that could be more demanding and complex still, and we must be ready for those. He said Britain is determined to play its full part alongside the United States, standing shoulder to shoulder and building on their shared values, their sense of common purpose, their mutual resolve.
He reported that they discussed today a very wide range of subjects. They have discussed the economic situation in Europe, in particular in the Eurozone.
“And in the United Kingdom, as our prime minister has said in parliament today, we want to see the Eurozone stabilized. That involves far more than simply greater medium-term fiscal integration.” -Mr. Hague
He said the markets wants to be assured that the firewall is big enough for the Eurozone and that banks are adequately recapitalized, that countries like Greece have adequately dealt with the problems.
“We cannot sign a European treaty that does not give adequate protection to the single market in Europe, but we’re not changing our relationship with the European Union.” – Mr. Hague
He stressed that both countries share a growing concern with the United States about the situation in Syria and the deplorable violence orchestrated by the regime.