Italy, Portugal, Spain upbeat about end to EU financial crisis

(MENAFN- Kuwait News Agency - Arabic) Italy, Portugal and Spain voiced confidence here Tuesday in Europe's ability to go out of the current financial crisis. The leaders of Italy, Portugal and Spain made the remarks in addresses in a ceremony to award the 2011 and 2012 Economy Forum Prizes. Stressing economic, social and cultural interests among the three countries, Presidents Giorgio Napolitano of Italy, Anibal Cavaco Silva of Portugal and Spain's King Juan Carlos called on the European Commission to adopt fresh policies for European economic recovery. They emphasized that measures should be taken to achieve economic growth, together with austerity policies adopted by some European countries. They also urged more European economic integration and closer cooperation among EU member states with a view to boosting European citizens' confidence in the ability to go out of the financial crisis. Earlier on Tuesday, Spain's King Juan Carlos and Italian President Giorgio Napolitano held talks on bilateral relations, the evolution of the European Union economy and ways to stimulate competitiveness in the countries of southern Europe. The Italian and Portuguese leaders will remain in Madrid Wednesday to preside, together with Juan Carlos, over the closure of the 8th Cotec Europe Meeting, which fosters innovation by small and medium-sized companies as a way of boosting competitiveness in the three countries. More than a 100 big business owners and authorities from these three countries will attend the forum, in which European Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship Antonio Tajani will also take part. The Cotec Foundation for Technological Innovation was created in Spain more than 20 years ago by a group of business owners at the suggestion of the king, after he had visited the United States in late 1980 and observed the positive effects of innovation on economic growth. King Juan Carlos was also responsible for the launch, in May 2005 , of Cotec Europe, which came about after the creation of similar foundations in Italy and Portugal, for the purpose of the three countries joining forces to get an efficient response to the business needs of the continent's southern region.

Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)

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