LISBON, May 30 (Xinhua) -- The leaders of Portugal and Spain on Tuesday pledged for a "new impulse" in the EU's economic convergence at the 29th summit between the two countries, an annual bilateral event.
"Both governments understand that the EU should steer its action towards values of solidarity and cohesion, and be concerned foremost with the concerns and fears of citizens," a joint statement by Portugal and Spain reads.
"In that sense, the freedom of the internal market should be utmost respected, in particular the free movement of workers. The economic convergence between member states should equally receive a new boost."
The European economic area was one of the highlights of a joint statement marking the end of a two-day summit in Vila Real, around 400 km north of the Portuguese capital Lisbon, held by Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa and his Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy.
Portugal and Spain also pointed out that it is in a "strong and united" EU where the response to citizens' problems resides, adding that summits in southern countries have been the "stage" for "concrete solutions to the common problems of the EU and for the fundamental debate regarding the future European project."
Both countries pointed to their commitment with responsible and sustainable fiscal policies aiming to promote growth, investment, creation of jobs and social cohesion.
Costa and Rajoy also analysed possible cooperation between both countries in the natural gas sector during the summit.
"Both countries have the conviction that the creation of an Iberian market for gas will be a milestone in the internal market of energy of the EU," they said in the statement.
"The integration of the natural gas systems will benefit the consumers of both countries and will enable access to the market for all participants in equal conditions, in a transparent, objective and non-discriminatory way."