FM criticises Dutch labour restrictions

Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi said on Saturday in an interview to Nederland2 station that the Netherlands government’s decision to extend labour market restrictions for Romanians is based on “wrong perceptions.” The minister voiced wish to collaborate with Dutch authorities to dismiss these wrong perceptions. “According to most recent data, the number of work permits issued for Romanian workers is between 2,000 and 3,000. So it would be artificial to imagine such a threat from Romanian workers who would invade the Dutch labour market,” the minister said, according to Mediafax. The Netherlands decided last week to extend restrictions for Romanian and Bulgarian workers by two more years. In the interview, Baconschi also said Romania continues to work to obtain a favourable decision on Schengen accession and called for a closed inter-parliamentary dialogue on the issue with the Netherlands. He said it was strange to have this issue on the bilateral agenda, given that the Nether­lands is Romania’s first trade partner. The Dutch government is determined to oppose Romania’s and Bulgaria’s Schengen entry until the two countries show irreversible progress in fighting organised crime and corruption.

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