PM Ponta: I will discuss with Juncker our intention to keep the agriculture portfolio.
Romania’s candidate for a European commissioner position, incumbent Commissioner for Agriculture Dacian Ciolos is welcome in the next European Commission, President Traian Basescu declared after the summit of the heads of state and government of the 28 EU states in Brussels on Wednesday night. ‘The Romanian candidate is accepted, at least in this stage. The government now has to start the procedures. According to the Law 335 of 2013 [the candidate] must pass through the Parliament committees. Nevertheless, Ciolos is welcome in the commission,’ Basescu said.
As regards the positions in the European Commission, the European Council in Brussels decided to hold another meeting on August 30. ‘We agreed to convene on August 30 to discuss the president of the council, the high representative [of the Union for foreign affairs), and the head of the Eurozone [the president of the Eurogroup – the assembly of finance ministers of the euro area]. We don’t discuss names. No one discussed names, just principles,’ the Romanian president added.
Prime Minister Victor Ponta on Thursday stated he intended to discuss with the newly elected President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, about the nomination on behalf of Romania of a new European Commission, our country’s current option being to keep the agriculture portfolio. ‘I haven’t discussed this with the President and, unfortunately, I found out last night that no conclusion was yet reached related to the nominations for the European Commission, except for the President of this body, Mr. Juncker, who was, in fact, already confirmed including by the European Parliament. As you all already know, the Romanian government’s current position that we already debated and that I’m going to discuss it also with Mr. Juncker is to try to keep the agriculture portfolio,’ Prime Minister Ponta replied, when asked whether he has discussed with President Basescu about the nomination Romania is going to make for the position of European Commissioner.
‘EU should take more resolute action on Ukraine’
President Traian Basescu on Wednesday night called for more resolute action of the European Union as regards Ukraine, this being his point of view expressed at the European Council meeting in Brussels. ‘My point of view was that if the European Union does take more resolute action to impose sanctions, and immediately move to the third stage of sanctions, Ukraine will turn into a country no longer able to advance towards the EU, and this fact will also affect the Republic of Moldova, given the Transdnestria separatist movement. But the impact on a country like Ukraine will be infinitely greater for the EU, due to the size of Ukraine,’ Traian Basescu said at the end of the meeting in Brussels.
When asked whether the suspension of financial operations by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) can be interpreted as a transition to the third stage, the head of state said he does not think so. ‘What might come next is a switch to Russian companies, but this measure has not been adopted yet,’ the Romanian head of state said.