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Photo: ©Direction de la Communication/Charly Gallo[/caption]
Minister of State, Serge Telle, took the opportunity to address the editorial board of Euronet+, who are meeting in Monaco this week, and talk to its members on the topic of Monaco’s ongoing negotiations with the European Union.
The 25 members of the European radio station network that was set up in 2007, with support from the European Commission as a consortium of European international and national radio stations, heard that while Monaco is seeking an association agreement with the European Union, which does not amount to becoming a member state, the Principality is in no particular hurry. “We do not want any agreement, but a good deal,” Mr Telle said.
“Monaco has 40,000 residents and only 20% are Monegasque,” he told the press. “We have 100 different nationalities. So we must preserve our identity but we must also be progressive.”
While pointing out that the EU stands for peace and prosperity, the Minister of State commented that the agreement with the EU, if negotiated under the right terms, would allow Monaco to export its businesses to other EU-member states without having to go through France.
He also reminded the roundtable, when asked several times about Monaco’s tax haven status, that in July the country signed a tax transparency agreement with the EU
Mr Telle also explained that, unlike many European countries, Monaco has no debt, and has a budget surplus. He mentioned that while there may not be personal income tax in Monaco, there are business taxes and 50 percent of the State’s revenues comes from the Value Added Tax (VAT).
Meanwhile in New York, on September 22 the Minister of State used the opportunity of the opening of the 71st session of the General Assembly of the United Nations to remind the 131 heads of state and government present of the priorities set by the Sovereign Prince.
“Under the leadership of HSH Prince Albert II, and as part of an ancient tradition, the whole Principality is now mobilised to protect the environment. (This includes) the Government that I lead, of course, but also other institutions: the Oceanographic Institute, the Prince Albert II Foundation
, the Scientific Centre of Monaco, as well as many private players.”
Mr Telle added that although oceans represent two-thirds of the surface of our planet, their bio-diversity is often overlooked. “A planet with nine billion people can not survive without the sustainable use of their resources,” he said.