July 10, 2019
One more question, please.....
“The US and Europe are connected by a long-standing partnership through history, common interests and values. Rule of law, democratic systems and a strong defense alliance have let to unprecedented prosperity on both sides of the Atlantic. Trade between the US and Europe is responsible for almost half of global GDP. Be it the rising business investments on both sides of the Atlantic or the record-breaking US participation in the 2019 Munich Security Conference – there are no shortage of examples of the strong connections between the United States of America and Europe. Particularly between the State of Bavaria and the United States we continue to see evidence of strong economic ties. Over than 200 US companies call the State of Bavaria home. BMW has its largest manufacturing facility worldwide in the State of South Carolina. Bavarian companies employ over 160,000 Americans, while US companies have created 40,000 jobs in Bavaria alone.
And our ties will continue to be stronger. The US and Germany recently began a strategic dialog. Delegations in Washington D.C. have defined key priorities in addressing threats to transatlantic security and crises in the Middle East and in strengthening their strategic cooperation. Both sides have also reaffirmed their ongoing commitment to strengthening the partnership between the US and Germany.
We are able to openly discuss important topics like Nord Stream 2 and 5G precisely because of these ties.
The Nord Stream 2 pipeline poses a strategic risk for Germany since it would make the country more dependent on Russian gas. In fact, Russia has already used energy for political and economic leverage. Russia’s continuing aggression toward Ukraine shows that energy is just another weapon in in Russia’s arsenal of hybrid warfare.
A secure and reliable telecommunications infrastructure is also a critical aspect of national security. In fact, cyber security risks could become more acute once the latest 5G cellular standard becomes operational. We are currently evaluating the risks for NATO and our other transatlantic partners if companies like Huawei or ZTE (both of which are required to share data with China) were to control the 5G infrastructure of a NATO ally.
We are addressing these and other issues to ensure our own security as well as the security of Germany and all NATO allies. We are discussing these issues to ensure that our partnership continues to be strong and prosper.”
Consul General Meghan Gregonis has been US Consul General in Munich since July 2018.