Remarks of President Reagan and President Gaston Thorn of the European Commission Following Their Meeting

April 21, 1983

President Reagan. It was my pleasure today to have an extensive discussion with President Thorn and other representatives of the European Commission.

Our discussions focused on the Williamsburg summit, as you can imagine. This will bring President Thorn back to the United States next month.

President Thorn demonstrated his support for close and friendly relations between Europe and the United States during years of distinguished service as Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Luxembourg. Our discussions today have demonstrated that his dedication to these objectives is just as vigorous in his present role as President of the European Commission.

Our discussions on summit preparations have strengthened my conviction that the meeting at Williamsburg will be a valuable opportunity for a free and open exchange of views on the problems and opportunities the world presents to us.

It's especially an opportunity to help to create a basis for sustainable, noninflationary growth in the world economy and to strengthen the international trading and financial systems and the links between them. The European Community, our largest overseas trading partner, will be essential to that effort.

We agreed also that the United States Government and the Commission must make urgent efforts to find solutions to the differences we have on international trade issues. We're both committed to avoiding any slide into protectionism. We also noted with satisfaction the progress made in various organizations toward a common Western approach on questions on East-West economic relations.

President Thorn, welcome, and it's good to have you back.

President Thorn. Thank you Mr. President. Thank you.

Ladies and gentlemen, I have nothing to add to what the President said. I'm in full agreement with him. But we had a good meeting, and I'm now even more confident than when I came that Williamsburg will be a success, and we'll cooperate in order to make it success.

Note: President Reagan spoke at 11:40 a.m. to reporters assembled on the South Grounds of the White House. Prior to their remarks, the two Presidents met in the Oval Office.