Speaking at the annual state of the union address, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker announced that the "wind is back in Europe's sails" after a turbulent few years for the bloc.

Speaking from the European Parliament in Brussels, Juncker said that it was time to "raise anchor, get going, set sail" with recent headlines dominated by trade links with the US and the Brexit negotiations.

He applauded what had been a positive year for the European economy since his last address in 2016 and called for more trade deals, especially with Australia and New Zealand, with the aim to haves these completed by 2019.

Speaking in French, German and English, Juncker made it clear that Brexit was not a major issue for him, stating that "we will move on because Brexit isn't everything. It isn't the future of Europe. It's not the be all and end all."

He also issued a warning to Britian, which is currently slowly progressing with exit negotiations, saying that "we will always regret this, and I think you will regret this too, soon."

Juncker turned his attention to Turkey which has for a number of years attempted to join the EU, but relations, particularly between Ankara and Berlin, have faltered in recent months after the arrests of dozens of Western journalists.

To much applause from the European Parliament, he called on the Turkish government to stop attacking EU leaders and to "let our journalists go." Turkey has been instrumental in a deal to help stem the flow of migrants between the Middle East and the EU.

Meanwhile, Italy has handled an influx of migrants and refugees. Boats have arrived on a near daily basis from locations across northern Africa, some just over a hundred miles away from the Sicilian coastline.

Juncker commended Italy's "perseverance and generosity" in what has been a pressing issue for the government in Rome. He added that despite this "generosity", more work had to be done to open legal migration routes.