Rose Garden Washington D.C. June 24 3:47 P.M. EDT
Well, thank you very much, everyone. Please. Thank you. Beautiful day in the Rose Garden. And I want to thank everybody for being here with us. We all know what a wonderful country and a great country Poland is.
And it's my honor to have a friend of mine here, President Duda of Poland, who has done an incredible job. And I do believe he has an election coming up, and I do believe he'll be very successful. So thank you very much and all of your representatives. Thank you very much for being here.
This is the third time that we've hosted President Duda. The First Lady and I also cherish our remarkable visit to Poland three years ago. That was an amazing event. We had an event, because it was a speech, and a lot of people watched that speech. But it was a very historic moment and an important moment for our two countries.
The American and Polish people enjoy one of the world's oldest, strongest, and most enduring friendships. Polish patriots battled by our side to secure American independence. American and Polish warriors fought and died together to defeat the Nazis in World War Two. The United States stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Poland in its courageous struggle against communist oppression. Our bond has been forged in battle, sealed in blood, and strengthened by our shared cultural values.
The United States and Poland are united by our firm conviction that Western civilization has advanced, really — and very much advanced, I think I have to add — the cause of human progress beyond measure, and that it must be strongly defended — and will, at all times, be strongly defended. And we will defend it together.
In our meeting today, President Duda and I reaffirmed the vital alliance between our nations. Last year, we signed two joint declarations to increase our security collaboration, and we look forward to signing a defense cooperation agreement.
Poland recently purchased 32 brand-new state-of-the-art F-35 fighter jets — the best in the world — and Poland is one of only eight NATO members — the others, some of them, haven't done so well in terms of what they're supposed to be paying to NATO. I tell them all the time. And we've gotten them up a lot, but not enough. But Poland is one of only eight that is current with the money that they are supposed to be paying. That's the 2 percent. Two percent is a very low number.
But we have a large number of countries that haven't paid. They're delinquent. Let's put it that way. They're delinquent with respect to their dues, the money they're supposed to be paying for defense. So the United States is defending a lot of countries that are delinquent on what they're supposed to be paying, and I never feel too good about that.
But I will say I spoke with the Secretary General, and he said we've done a great job. But I said we haven't done good enough. We haven't done a good enough job.
We have secured, though, over $400 billion in new pledged defense spending from NATO members, which is something that no other administration has come even close to. I would say they're off by many, many hundreds of billions of dollars — something the newspaper doesn't like writing about, that the media doesn't like talking about. But we will be only satisfied when all members pay their fair share. Again, only eight members, plus the United States, is paying what is considered a fair share.
I also applaud Poland and the Polish people for its devotion to safeguarding their country's borders. Very strong borders. And I just left our border, by the way. The wall is moving along rapidly, and our border is about as strong as it's ever been — our southern border.
Last year, we were able to add Poland to the visa waiver program. And they wanted that very badly, and we gave it to them because they really deserve it. It's a testament to Poland's vigilant efforts to uphold the rule of law.
The United States and Poland have recently signed several long-term contracts for U.S. liquefied natural gas — they're a big purchaser of our energy — to enhance Poland's energy security. And we're working to conclude an agreement that would facilitates — facilitate Poland's development of nuclear energy plants throughout the purchase — they're going to be purchasing with one of our big, very good companies, technology, to do civilian nuclear energy.
I want to congratulate Poland for its leadership in the Three Seas Initiative, a crucial energy partnership that will provide a reliable source of energy for Eastern Europe. And it will be free from the threat of foreign extortion. Poland understands foreign extortion very well. The Three Seas Initiative relies on fairness, transparency, and mutual benefit.
Our nations have also collaborated on protecting our critical infrastructure and technology. That's why we've signed a 5G Joint Declaration, and Poland is leading the way in Europe by using trusted providers and provider equipment and supply chains for its 5G network. And we're working along with them, and they're using our companies.
The United States and Poland cooperate across a truly wide range of fronts that we're both very much involved in. Here today is the head of a Polish medical team — very advanced team, very brilliant team — fighting the coronavirus alongside of American doctors: Captain Siewiera. Captain — thank you for being here, Captain. (Applause.)
And we're making great progress. I hear we're making great progress and we're working together. But we are making great progress on therapeutics and vaccines. Thank you very much. Appreciate you being here.
The American and Polish people have been true friends and trusted partners for almost 250 years. We are forever united by our shared belief in family, faith, law, liberty, democracy, and justice. As the old Polish motto goes, we will stand together in the name of God "for our freedom and for yours."
President Duda, let me express once again our gratitude for your visit and friendship. We have had a very, very special relationship. Our alliance is powerful and a very powerful testament to what free people can achieve together. And I believe that the greatness of our relationship lies ahead.
Thank you very much. President, please. Thank you.
Thank you very much, Mr. President.
(As interpreted.) Ladies and gentlemen, first and foremost, I would like to thank very warmly — I would like to thank very warmly to President Donald Trump, to the President of the United States of America. Thank you very much for inviting me here to Washington, to the White House, to take part in this very important meeting to us.
This meeting is important for many reasons. To me, as President of the Republic of Poland, this meeting is important because Poland is the first country after the coronavirus pandemic which has been invited to the meeting in the White House to discuss the most important matters concerning the future, concerning how the relations will look between the United States and Poland, in terms of economy, what those relations will be like in the military sphere, and what those relations will be like in the sphere of health protection — all those elements which are of key importance today.
A very big part of our discussions today with Mr. President and our collaborators were dedicated to the coronavirus, to what the situation looks like in Europe and on the global stage, as concerns the fight against the coronavirus also in the United States. But, first and foremost, we're also thinking about what measures to take in the future.
But, first and foremost, thank you so much, Mr. President, for your declaration that we are going to cooperate; that also our scientists are going to cooperate and collaborate on conducting research concerning the vaccine and therapy drug against coronavirus — everything that will be conducive to fighting the coronavirus.
So I do believe that thanks to this collaboration, those therapeutical medicines will be available also for Poles — for my compatriots — as soon as possible. Thank you so much, President, for that because all of us know very well how high level of medical research is in the United States.
And this declaration and the will of cooperation on part of the United States, on part of the President of the United States is of crucial importance to us. So thank you very much for that.
But, ladies and gentlemen, we also discussed the cooperation in the sphere of economy and military. Let me first mention our economic cooperation. As the President has just mentioned, we're developing it, both in the sphere of energy — in building energy security. Today we can say that the United States is cooperating in the sphere of creating energy security — not only the energy security of Poland, but also the energy security of Central Europe.
The President has just mentioned the Three Seas Initiative. Yes, all the investments that are being carried out in Poland today — the extension of the capacity of LNG terminal in Świnoujście, we're increasing its capacity by 2.5 billion cubic meters. We also plan to construct another LNG terminal in the Port of Gdańsk. All of that is conducive to being able to receive LNG gas and provide its deliveries not only across Poland, but also for the countries of Central Europe.
The vast majority of those countries of Central Europe are still dependent on Russia and creating a true alternative. In other words, diversification of supplies is of key importance for their security.
Thank you, Mr. President, for this cooperation. I do believe that we're going to further develop it. Today we have got those supplies guaranteed until 2023 — by the end of 2023. But I know that we are also going to enter into further contracts in this respect — even more so that, for sure, our demand is going to increase.
But, ladies and gentlemen, we also discussed conventional energy and nuclear energy cooperation. In the nearest future, an agreement will be signed between the governments of the United States of America and the Republic of Poland. And thanks to this agreement, we'll be able to start designing the large design of introducing conventional nuclear energy for the production of electricity in Poland.
The entities which will participate in this project have already been selected, and the agreements are very advanced on the Polish side. We have got Minister Piotr Naimski, who's in charge of those negotiations right now. An appropriate intergovernmental agreement is about to be concluded — finalized. We can expect that to happen in the near future.
But, ladies and gentlemen, I also want to mention the contribution of the United States into the Three Seas Initiative and, first and foremost, the financial contribution to the fund of the Three Seas Initiative. Mr. President got interested in that fund some time ago. This is an element, a vehicle, which enables the development of this cooperation.
Thank you, Mr. President, for your activity. And thank you for appreciating this cooperation which takes place in Central Europe within the framework of the European Union. And the goal of this cooperation is to develop, to extend the infrastructure. Thank you for noticing the possibility of developing cooperation in the transatlantic zone between the countries of the European Union and the United States.
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