In his speech at the official opening ceremony of the Georgian Embassy in Zagreb, Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, Andrej Plenkovic, expressed unwavering support for Georgia's journey towards European and transatlantic ambitions. He emphasized Croatia's respect for Georgia's sovereignty and territorial integrity, while acknowledging the challenges the country faces in resolving issues related to the occupied territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

"Mr. Prime Minister, dear Irakli! Welcome to Croatia. I extend my gratitude to Ambassador Gogsadze for hosting me at the newly opened Georgian Embassy in Zagreb. I extend warm greetings to Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, Darchiashvili, and his Croatian counterpart. I would also like to extend a warm welcome to our Georgian friends and esteemed Croatian officials. The soul-stirring performance of polyphonic songs has touched all of us profoundly. Your rendition of both national anthems was exceptional, and had I not known you were Georgians, I would have mistaken you for talented Croatian artists. We are deeply honored to have you here, and I extend my heartfelt appreciation to the Prime Minister of Georgia for bringing this ensemble to this momentous occasion.

Today marks a truly historic event, as it is the first official visit of the Prime Minister of Georgia to our country. It was exactly 8 years ago that I had the privilege of meeting Mr. Irakli. Back then, I was a member of the European Parliament, and you had just commenced your first term as Prime Minister. During my visit to Tbilisi, I had the opportunity to experience the beauty of your country firsthand and understand the challenges it faced, including the complex issue of the occupied territories - Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Your resilience under pressure has earned our admiration and, consequently, our unwavering support for your sovereignty and territorial integrity. We recognize and empathize with your endeavors to reunify your country, bringing the currently occupied territories under your government's jurisdiction and constitutional control. Croatia, too, faced a similar situation in the 90s, and it took us seven years to establish legal and constitutional order throughout our entire territory. Thus, we can empathize with your journey and stand beside you in solidarity.

Furthermore, Croatia remains steadfast in supporting your aspirations towards European integration and a transatlantic partnership. We actively backed the issue of granting you candidate status and recognizing Georgia's European perspective during the vote at the European Council one year ago. We eagerly anticipate witnessing Georgia meet the necessary criteria set by the Georgian government, which will pave the way for further decisions at the EU level, culminating in the initiation of EU accession negotiations.

Additionally, we wholeheartedly welcome Georgia's efforts in the fields of security and defense. As you progress in fulfilling the qualification requirements, we look forward to the possibility of Georgia's membership in NATO.

In terms of bilateral relations, it is evident that our countries share many commonalities. Today, we have agreed to bolster economic ties, promote cultural cooperation, and explore potential collaborations, given our strategic locations and mutual interests in the context of future energy partnerships. In an era where renewable energy sources are gradually replacing fossil fuels, significant investments are essential, and we believe that cooperation across Europe will play a vital role in this endeavor.

To this end, I eagerly anticipate the active engagement of your Ambassador here in Zagreb, who will be the driving force behind the implementation of various ideas and initiatives to enhance cooperation between Georgia and Croatia. On behalf of myself, the Croatian Foreign Minister, and the entire government, I extend my best wishes to your ambassador and their team. Thank you for extending an invitation to Tbilisi; we will promptly arrange a date for my return visit and invite you to join in celebrating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Georgia and Croatia. Once again, dear Irakli, I extend my appreciation to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Ambassador of Georgia," conveyed the Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia.