US ambassador Randy Evans says Luxembourg is the holder of significant investment assets that are tailor-made for the space sector.
Photo: Matic Zorman
New US ambassador to Luxembourg Randy Evans talks with Delano about the uniqueness of the grand duchy, Nato, space and trade.
Just two months into his tenure, US ambassador to Luxembourg Randy Evans is already impressed with the country and its people. A genial host--he comes from Georgia, after all--Evans is forthright and candid. He asked for the Luxembourg post, being keenly aware of Luxembourg before he arrived. The law firm in which he was a partner, Dentons, has an office in the grand duchy. “Under the rules I cannot visit them,” the ambassador says.
“When I looked at the people, the place the beauty, it was a no-brainer. It embodied the kind of place I want to live in and the community I would want to be a part of.” He describes the grand duke as a “phenomenal person” who is “an enormous asset for the country, a calming and stabilising influence, but one who is very well learned.” And his meetings with a number of government ministers left Evans equally impressed. “Everybody has a passion about them…not about what’s good for a political party or an individual political career, but what’s good for the country.”
Evans relishes the challenges of the post, and is keen to talk about the Wales commitment, the guideline agreed in 2014 by Nato member countries to move towards the 2% of GDP spending on defence within a decade. He acknowledges that Luxembourg has unique challenges because of the size of its GDP and of its armed forces but says: “I think they’re working hard to move in the right direction.”
Leadership role in space sector
The ambassador is also keen to talk about Luxembourg’s growing space sector, saying that the grand duchy is perfectly positioned to assume an enormous leadership role in the space sector. “No country can substitute for the stability of the US financial markets, and you can’t go into space without enormous financial backing. On the other hand, we know that Luxembourg is the holder of significant investment assets that are also tailor-made for the same exploration. Put those two together, with a little bit of guidance and leadership and you’re making the kind of progress that we have to make over the future of our planet.”
On trade, Evans says that Trump is the quintessential deal maker. “Which means that he considers everything on the table. You’re best to measure him by the deal that’s left at the end of the day, not the beginning,” he says citing the negotiations with North Korea as an example. “The president’s goal is never to walk into a room and rearrange the pieces of the board. It is to walk into the room and knock the table over and pick up the pieces and put together a deal that makes sense.”
You can read the full interview with ambassador Randy Evans in the September edition of Delano, published on 12 September.