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30 Years of the EU Referendum: A Success Story for Austria

On June 12, 1994, a groundbreaking referendum was held in Austria, in which two-thirds of the population voted in favor of joining the European Union. This decision laid the foundations for a new era of economic, political, and social integration of Austria in Europe. Since its official accession on January 1, 1995, the country has changed considerably and has since benefited from EU membership in many ways.

Yesterday

Ukraine's Economic Potential: Analysis by the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies

In a new comprehensive study by the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw) and the Bertelsmann Foundation, Ukraine is recognized as having enormous economic potential.

Yesterday

Russia Expels ORF Correspondent Maria Knips-Witting

In a surprising diplomatic escalation, Russia has withdrawn the accreditation of ORF correspondent Maria Knips-Witting and ordered her to leave the country as quickly as possible. This measure was described by the Russian side as a “forced measure” and explained as a reaction to the withdrawal of the accreditations of two Russian journalists from the state news agency TASS in Austria. Knips-Witting has been reporting from Moscow since January 2024.

June 11, 2024

Austrian FPÖ Demands Right to Appoint Austrian EU Commissioner

Shortly after its triumphant success in the EU elections, the Freedom Party of Austria appears strong and confident. Now the FPÖ is emphatically demanding the right to appoint the Austrian EU Commissioner.

June 11, 2024

Shift to the Right in the EU and its Impact on Austria and Europe

The recent EU parliamentary elections have shown a clear shift to the right across Europe, particularly in Austria, where the FPÖ celebrated historic successes. These results put the political stability and future direction of the EU to the test.

June 10, 2024

Austria Promotes Key Projects for Renewable Energies in Central Asia

High-ranking representatives from Central Asia, Europe, and the Middle East as well as private investors are gathering in Vienna at the invitation of the World Bank to hold the International Energy Investment Forum. The event is being held in cooperation with the government of the Kyrgyz Republic and other international financial institutions such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

June 10, 2024

Shield 24: Largest Austrian Armed Forces Exercise in a Decade

From June 10 to 21, 2024, the Austrian Armed Forces will be conducting the most comprehensive military exercise of the last ten years. Around 7,500 soldiers and civilian staff will take part in “Schutzschild 24”, supported by international forces from Germany, Sweden, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro.

June 9, 2024

Austria's Foreign Minister Schallenberg in Berlin: Focus on the Future of Europe

Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg visited Berlin to discuss various European and international issues. His visit focused on the excellent bilateral relations between Austria and Germany, trade, and important decisions at the European level.

June 9, 2024

Unrestricted Access to the Labor Market for Ukrainian Refugees in Austria Decided

Ukrainians who have fled the war should be able to participate in the Austrian labor market permanently and without restrictions. The Social Affairs Committee of the National Council today pushed the extension of the “Red-White-Red Card Plus” towards a final decision in plenary. The governing parties ÖVP and Greens, as well as the NEOS, voted in favor, while initiatives by the NEOS and FPÖ on immigration were postponed.

June 6, 2024

Austria Supports International Call for Ceasefire in Gaza Conflict

In an urgent joint statement, the USA, Great Britain, Germany, and numerous other countries, including Austria, have called for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza conflict.

June 6, 2024

UN in Vienna to Get Monumental Mural to Promote Sustainable Development

An impressive art project will enrich the skyline of Vienna when a giant mural is created on one of the towers of the Vienna International Center (VIC). In collaboration with the Calle Libre Street Art Festival and the UN family in Vienna, the artwork aims to highlight the importance of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and shaping our common future.

June 5, 2024

Austria, Lithuania, and Latvia Join Forces to Strengthen Europe's Cyber Defense

Austria is intensifying its cyber defense by participating in the PESCO project “Cyber Rapid Response Team” initiated by Lithuania. Defense Minister Klaudia Tanner signed this agreement at the meeting of defense ministers in Brussels, together with Latvia, and in the presence of Lithuanian Defense Minister Laurynas Kasčiūnas.

June 5, 2024

Strengthening Economic Relations Between Austria and Saudi Arabia

The Saudi Minister of Economy, Faisal Al-Ibrahim, visited Vienna and met with the Austrian Federal Minister of Labor and Economy, Martin Kocher. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed as part of the 9th Saudi-Austrian Joint Committee, which aims to strengthen further and diversify economic relations between the two countries.

June 5, 2024

China's Ambassador Qi Mei On Cooperation Between China and Austria

China and Austria have maintained diplomatic relations since 1971. Chinese Ambassador to Austria Qi Mei spoke about the biggest milestones in cooperation, current challenges, and future potential.

June 5, 2024

Brigitte Bierlein is Dead: Austria Mourns the Loss of its First Female Chancellor

Brigitte Bierlein, Austria's first female chancellor, has died at the age of 74. The Constitutional Court (VfGH) announced the news of her death, of which Bierlein had been a member for around 16 years. She succumbed to a short, serious illness. Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen and Federal Chancellor Karl Nehammer paid tribute to Bierlein as an outstanding personality who had served the country faithfully in many functions.

June 3, 2024

UNHCR Calls for Increased Efforts Against Statelessness in Austria

Ten years after the UN Refugee Agency's (UNHCR) #IBelong campaign launched, which aimed to end statelessness by 2024, an estimated ten million people worldwide still live without citizenship. The UNHCR also sees a considerable need for action in Austria.

June 3, 2024

OPEC+ Extends Production Cuts Until 2025

Representatives from Saudi Arabia, Russia, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Kazakhstan, Algeria, and Oman met in Riyadh on the sidelines of the 37th OPEC and Non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting (ONOMM). During the meeting, the participating countries decided to extend the existing production cuts until the end of 2025.

June 2, 2024

Former French President François Hollande Signs the Golden Book of the City of Vienna

Former French President and Social Democrat François Hollande signed the Golden Book of the City of Vienna. Mayor Michael Ludwig and high-ranking representatives of the City of Vienna received the former head of state and his delegation in the Red Salon of City Hall.

June 2, 2024

UNOOSA and Japan Support New Space Law Legislation Missions in the Philippines and Thailand

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the Government of Japan have announced a new phase of their cooperation under the Space Law for New Space Actors project. This successful cooperation, launched in 2021, will enable UNOOSA to provide continuous capacity-building and legal advisory services specifically tailored to the needs of countries in Asia and the Pacific.

May 30, 2024

Austria Signs Pact for Hydrogen Corridor

In a step towards a sustainable energy future, the energy ministers of Italy, Germany, and Austria have signed a joint declaration of intent to develop a hydrogen import corridor between the three countries.

May 30, 2024

Othmar Karas Warns Against Extremism and Emphasizes the Importance of the Political Center in Europe

Around two weeks before the EU elections, the outgoing first Vice-President of the European Parliament, Othmar Karas (nor ÖVP), issued an urgent warning about the dangers of "extremism and nationalism". At a press conference at the party headquarters of the South Tyrolean People's Party (SVP) in Bolzano, Karas emphasized the need for a strong "political center" characterized by cooperation and compromise.

May 27, 2024

Anti-Muslim Racism in Austria Reaches New High

The Documentation Center Islamophobia and Anti-Muslim Racism (Documentation Center Austria) recently published worrying figures for the year 2023. A total of 1,522 cases of racist attacks on Muslims were recorded, which is the highest number since records began in 2015.

May 27, 2024

Franco-Armenian Concert in Vienna in Honor of Charles Aznavour

On May 23, 2024, Charles Aznavour, one of the greatest icons of French chanson, would have turned 100 years old. To mark this special occasion, the French and Armenian embassies joined forces to celebrate the impressive life and work of the French-Armenian singer, songwriter, and actor at the Theater Akzent in Vienna. This concert was a tribute to an artist whose music and influence have shaped generations of fans and artists.

May 26, 2024

Concordia Ball 2024: A Celebration of Freedom of the Press

On May 24, 2024, Vienna City Hall was transformed into the venue for the 124th Concordia Ball, at which the media industry, artists, and cultural figures as well as an international ball audience set an impressive example for freedom of the press. This year, the traditional ball, organized by the Concordia Press Club, was all about free journalism and diversity of opinion.

May 26, 2024

"Mozart at the Table": New Special Exhibition at Mozarthaus Vienna

Mozarthaus Vienna presents the special exhibition "Mozart at the Table" from May 24, 2024. This unique show offers fascinating insights into Mozart's private life and culinary experiences.

May 24, 2024

Austria's Schallenberg Visits Saudi Arabia: Exchange on Middle East Conflict and Economic cooperation

Austria's Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg visited Saudi Arabia as part of his latest visit to the Middle East and met with his Saudi counterpart Prince Faisal bin Farhan. The talks focused on the Middle East conflict and the intensification of economic relations between the two countries.

May 23, 2024

Supply Stop and Human Rights Allegations for OMV

OMV, Austria's leading energy company, is currently under immense pressure. Two developments could have a significant impact on the company and the Austrian energy market: the threat of Gazprom stopping gas supplies and serious allegations of involvement in war crimes against former OMV executives in Sudan.

May 22, 2024

Austrian Climate Ministry Supports Ukraine with Five Million Euros for the Reconstruction of Energy Infrastructure

The Austrian Federal Government has announced its support for Ukraine by releasing five million euros in aid to the Ukraine Energy Support Fund. This financial aid aims to promote the reconstruction of Ukraine's severely damaged energy infrastructure, which has been suffering from the devastating effects of the war for over two years.

May 22, 2024

Austria's Nehammer and Britain's Sunak On Asylum Procedures and Migration

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer has received British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak for an official visit to Vienna. The talks between the two Conservative heads of government focused on migration and geopolitical challenges. In a joint press statement, Nehammer and Sunak emphasized their agreement on the issue of asylum procedures in safe third countries and highlighted the importance of strategic partnerships to combat illegal migration and save lives.

May 21, 2024

Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Exercises Near Ukraine

Russia has begun nuclear weapons exercises near the Ukrainian border, once again issuing a stronger nuclear threat to the West. The exercises, which are taking place in the south of Russia, include training with tactical nuclear weapons, as announced by the Russian Ministry of Defense.

May 21, 2024

Austria's Constitutional Protection Agency Warns of Chinese Economic Espionage

The Austrian Office for the Protection of the Constitution has issued an urgent warning about Chinese industrial espionage. Small and medium-sized enterprises and research centers are particularly at risk.

May 20, 2024

FPÖ Wants Orban as EU Commission President

The top candidate of the Austrian right-wing party FPÖ is threatening to stop EU contributions under an FPÖ government and would like to see the Hungarian prime minister as EU Commission president.

May 20, 2024

Georgia in the Focus of the OSCE: Protests, Political Tensions and International Support

The political situation in Georgia remains tense as the population takes to the streets to protest against a controversial law and international actors pledge their support. During his visit to Georgia, the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Malta's Foreign Minister Ian Borg, emphasized the importance of civil society and the organization's role in conflict resolution. At the same time, protests against the so-called "agent law", seen by many as a threat to the country's democratic structures and EU integration, are continuing.

May 16, 2024

Brenner Transit Dispute: Austria and Italy Go to European Court

The long-running dispute over the anti-transit measures on the Brenner route between Austria and Italy continues to escalate: the European Commission has cleared the way for Italy to take Austria to the European Court of Justice (ECJ).

May 16, 2024

Slovakia Prime Minister in Danger: Assassination Attempt on Slovakia's Robert Fico Shakes Europe

A serious attack on Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico has shaken Europe. A 71-year-old man shot Fico after a meeting and is in critical condition.

May 15, 2024

Raiffeisen Bank International Withdraws from Controversial STRABAG Transaction

Raiffeisen Bank International AG (RBI) has announced that it will no longer pursue the planned acquisition of shares in STRABAG SE. This decision was made public in an ad hoc announcement in which the bank stated that it had not received the necessary comfort in discussions with the relevant authorities to proceed with the transaction. RBI therefore decided to refrain from the transaction for reasons of prudence.

May 15, 2024

René Benko Business Scandal: Abu Dhabi's Ruling Family Demands Millions Back

The ruling family of Abu Dhabi, led by Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed al Nahyan, is demanding the return of 250 million euros from René Benko via the International Court of Arbitration (ICC) in Paris.

May 14, 2024

New Perspectives in Austrian-Turkish Relations: Schallenberg in Ankara

Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg is visiting the Turkish capital Ankara for two days to hold important talks with Turkish Interior Minister Ali Yerlikaya and Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan. The reason for the visit is the Austrian-Turkish anniversary year 2024, which celebrates the 100th anniversary of the friendship treaty and the 60th year of the recruitment agreement between the two countries.

May 14, 2024

UNODC Reports the Unyielding Challenge of Wildlife Trafficking

Wildlife trafficking remains a critical global issue, endangering thousands of species and disrupting ecosystems around the world. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has released a comprehensive report detailing the scale and complexity of the ongoing challenge.

May 13, 2024

Austrian NEOS Party Calls for Special Audit on Flawed Austrian Counterintelligence

In a recent initiative in the Austrian National Council, the NEOS party has requested a comprehensive special audit by the Austrian Court of Audit focusing on the effectiveness of counter-espionage measures in the central ministries. This demand is particularly directed at the ÖVP-led interior, foreign, and defense ministries, which, according to NEOS Secretary General Douglas Hoyos, have shown a "lax" attitude to counter-espionage for decades.

May 13, 2024

FPÖ Demands Stricter Control of Austria's Payments to Ukraine

In a recent debate in the Austrian parliament, the FPÖ called for establishing a separate control body to review the financial support provided by Austria and the EU to Ukraine. FPÖ MP Susanne Fürst expressed concerns about the efficiency of the existing control mechanisms and warned of the risk that the billions in aid could seep into the "channels of the Zelenskyy regime".

May 13, 2024

High Turnover of Russian Embassy Staff in Austria

The Austrian authorities are at the center of a sensitive security debate as diplomatic relations with Russia are strained by high staff turnover and serious allegations of espionage. Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg addresses these issues in light of new parliamentary questions.

May 13, 2024

Ukrainian Embassy in Vienna Protests Against FPÖ Election Poster

The Embassy of Ukraine in Vienna has lodged a formal complaint with the Austrian Foreign Ministry after an election poster by the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) caused outrage.

May 8, 2024

Remembering the Past, Preserving the Future: Liberation Ceremonies in Mauthausen and Melk

In an impressive gathering, thousands of people commemorated the liberation of the Mauthausen concentration camp and its satellite camps to keep the lessons of history alive and fight against forgetting. International delegations, including high-ranking representatives from politics and society, gathered to underline the importance of law and justice and to honor the victims of National Socialism.

May 8, 2024

Medical Research Cooperation between Austria and France

An important framework agreement between Austria and France was signed at the French embassy, laying the foundations for closer scientific cooperation. The French Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) and the Austrian Wolfgang Pauli Institute (WPI) will intensify the transnational research and knowledge exchange.

May 7, 2024

Austria's Rapprochement with NATO in the Context of Geopolitical Tensions

In a new development, Austria and three other traditionally neutral countries - Ireland, Malta, and Switzerland - are seeking to deepen their relationship with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). This move is part of a strategic response to the increasingly volatile geopolitical situation in Europe, particularly in light of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

May 7, 2024

Diplomatic Collisions on the Nuclear Front: Global Nervousness over Russia's Nuclear Maneuvers

Increasing tensions and recent developments regarding nuclear exercises and rhetoric pose a number of challenges for Europe, European security and especially Austria as the home of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).

May 6, 2024

Commemoration and Diplomacy: Austria's Schallenberg, Italy's Tajani and Brazil's Vieira in Imola

In a moving ceremony in Imola, which marked the 30th anniversary of the deaths of Formula 1 icons Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna, thousands of fans, political heavyweights, and family members came together to commemorate the deceased racing drivers. Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg, who himself once witnessed the tragic events, played a central role in the celebrations, which combined emotional and diplomatic themes, together with Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani and Brazilian Foreign Minister Mauro Vieira.

May 6, 2024

Vienna Conference Ended with Call for Regulation of Autonomous Weapons Systems

The call for stricter rules for autonomous weapons systems is growing louder, especially after the first international conference on this topic, which took place in Vienna from April 29 to 30, 2024. Alexander Schallenberg, the Austrian Foreign Minister, emphasized the urgency of establishing clear international rules for the use of autonomous weapons.

May 6, 2024

20 Years of EU Enlargement: Austria Looks at the Success Story of European Integration

Exactly 20 years ago, on May 1, 2004, a historic enlargement of the European Union came into force. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Cyprus became member states, marking the beginning of a new chapter in the history of Europe. This fifth round of enlargement marked a milestone for the countries involved and a significant change for Austria, as Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg, the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber and the Austrian Society for European Politics emphasize.

May 5, 2024