The President will have the opportunity to hold top-level talks with leaders of European countries, including those that opposed Romania and Bulgaria joining the Schengen area.
Before leaving for the Eastern Partnership Summit in Warsaw, President Traian Basescu said the main topics on the meeting agenda have in view implementing the mobility and energy cooperation partnership. “With respect to the Eastern mobility partnership, the focus is on visa liberalization. As of now, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine action plans are in an advanced stage of implementation. Georgia has begun implementing the re-accession agreement signed with the EU, and Armenia, Azerbaijan and Belarus are also expected to sign re-accession accords, followed by the implementation of action plan according to the issues specific to each country,” Mediafax quoted the head of state as saying. As to energy cooperation, he mentioned talks would be held on the projects, Nabucco, Azerbaijan-Georgia-Romania Interconnector (AGRI), and last but not least, the trans-Caspian gas pipeline. “At stake is a gas pipeline to link, under the Caspian Sea, the infrastructure of Turkmenistan with that in Azerbaijan, and from there on to Nabucco or the infrastructures in place. This will also give me the opportunity to have several bilateral meetings,” Basescu said.
According to political sources, the prime-minister Emil Boc was due to attend the event initially, but it was subsequently decided that president Basescu should represent Romania, after the JAI Council adjourned the decision concerning Romania’s and Bulgaria’s Schengen accession, Mediafax informs. At the same time, Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi was also supposed to be a member of the delegation, but was eventually replaced by Leonard Orban. In fact, this seems to be the motivation for the president’s taking part in the Warsaw summit: it will offer him the opportunity to have meetings at the highest level and talks with the leaders of European countries. The more so as the heads of state present in Warsaw will include the leaders of the countries which opposed Romania’s and Bulgaria’s Schengen accession, namely, The Netherlands and Finland. In fact, the problem of obstacles barring Schengen accession may be addressed when the European Council convenes in October, with a view to securing a political agreement.
Strategic decisions on the shape of the Eastern Partnership expected in Warsaw
The Eastern Partnership Summit that started last night in Warsaw host the heads of states and governments of 33 countries which include 27 EU Member States and six Eastern European countries. The two-day meeting is set to adopt strategic decisions on the shape of the Eastern Partnership for the years to come, being also an opportunity for a number of bilateral meetings. The main purpose of the summit is to provide a strong political signal on the increasing integration of the EU’s Eastern neighbours into Europe. The summit began on Thursday with a gala dinner for the heads of delegations at the Copernicus Science Centre during which a debate was to take place on the future of EU relations with the countries of Eastern Europe. Today’s plenary session will focus on the political and economic aspects of cooperation, visa issues, as well as funding for the Eastern Partnership and cooperation with European financial institutions.
According to www.easternpartnership.org, the summit is bound to be overshadowed by the recent events in Ukraine, where former PM Yulia Tymoshenko was arrested, hopes of finalizing talks with Ukraine being thus receded.