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February 1, 2023

Antonescu: USL Cabinet cannot be blamed for the low absorption of EU funds

The Senate Speaker believes Schengen accession delay is not about a certain government or moment but rather about the “old story” of political conjectures.

Crin Antonescu said at the conclusion of a meeting at the Palace of the Parliament with Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, that the foreign guest insisted on the seriousness of the fact that Romania has a very low absorption rate of European funds, which cannot be blamed on the acting government. He added that the talks with the Lithuanian leader also referred to the capacity of Romania’s power institutions (Parliament, Government, Presidency) to build a “coherent and long-term action,” regardless of the political changes that will occur after elections.According to Antonescu, the Lithuanian official made general and unbiased considerations about Romania, which cannot be seen as a warning, as suggested by the press Wednesday: “There were some considerations – as (Dalia Grybauskaite) actually mentioned – that are equally valid for Romania, Lithuania or any other country of the EU, concerning what politicians should do, but certainly not using the tone which the press seemed to suggest was used this morning.” In fact, the head of the Senate explained that his meeting with the Lithuanian president consisted in a very pleasant discussion that allowed him to discover an experienced politician and a friend of Romania. “I was pleasantly impressed, because of late I got used to very biased political statements of European counterparts or officials,” Antonescu mentioned, quoted by Mediafax, in allusion – among others – to the statements of the European commissioner for Justice, Viviane Reding which repeatedly criticised Romania.Commenting the Lithuanian official’s statements regarding the accession of Romania to the Schengen Zone, Crin Antonescu said that this is not about a certain government or a certain moment for joining Schengen, but rather it’s the “old story” of political conjectures: “This is about the fact that, technically, Romania has already met the conditions for Schengen, and political connotations and conjectures may serve as pretexts to some (politicians).”

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