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February 8, 2023

Corlatean: “Netherlands sees slightly differently the relation with Romania now”

The minister of Foreign Affairs spoke on a TV show about Romania’s accession to Schengen, the extraction of shale gas and the nomination of ambassadors.

The minister of Foreign Affairs, Titus Corlatean said Sunday on Realitatea TV, in the context of a discussion about Romania’s accession to Schengen, that the acting Dutch government sees differently the relations with Bucharest, especially as there are leaders that belong to the same political family.Asked about Netherlands’ opposition to the Schengen accession of Romania, Corlatean sais that he feels the relation goes in different “philosophy and dynamics.” “I had a first talk during the NATO ministerial with the new minister of Foreign Affairs, Frans Timmermans – I also have the advantage of belonging to the same European political family as myself. There will be a visit, either to Bucharest, or to Hague, in the first half of the year, and I already know, feel a completely different philosophy and dynamics. The relations between governments, ministers matters a lot, as well as the way one sees things. And the acting government of Hague – I assure you – sees somehow differently the relation with Romania,” the chief of diplomacy said Sunday on Realitatea TV.Titus Corlatean added that he relies on “steps forward” that must be supported “by arguments, political presence, contacts” at Government and Parliament level.As for Germany – which recently opposed Romania’s accession to Schengen – Titus Corlatean said that Germany is “consistent with itself” in its position. Besides the fact that it expects the latest report of the European Commission, during talks Berlin “appreciates the fact that Romania did its duty, made its homework and met the criteria, appreciates the fact that we invested EUR 1 bln for securing the borders, using state of the art technology, with Romanian and European money, and the fact that we were transparent also with the teams of foreign experts that came here,” the minister of Foreign Affairs mentioned.Also Sunday, the ambassador of Ireland, Oliver Grogan said in an interview with NewsIn, that Romania and Bulgaria met the technical criteria for the accession to Schengen, but there are countries that need new proofs of the progress achieved by the two countries, also within the MCV, before making a decision.Referring to the extraction of shale gas, Corlatean said on Realitatea TV that it can generate development for Romania, emphasising that the matter must be granted a rational approach, on scientific basis. The minister added that one also needs a public debate on this subject, so both sides can present their arguments. “The government intends to promote transparency and discuss the implications for the development of Romania, also with regard to this energy-related matter of shale gas,” Corlatean said.Also Sunday, the minister of Foreign Affairs spoke about the nominations of ambassadors, saying that he has a mandate to discuss these nominations with President Traian Basescu, as many important positions are vacant now.“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs proposes, makes the evaluation and the proposal. The procedure is finalised at the president, which makes the final decision, signs the decree, or does not sign it. Naturally – and you may have heard statements of the prime minister these weeks – this specific procedure needs a dialogue, and I received a very clear mandate to discuss with the president about the various proposals for nominating ambassadors, because these ambassadors play an extremely important role in promoting the interests of Romania. We are not allowed to wait for a long time. There are important positions that are vacant now,” Corlatean mentioned.He gave as example the posts in Rome, Warsaw and Athens, adding that there are also other ambassadors whose mandate ended or will end soon.“In at least two cases, I already made proposals based on professional, diplomatic criteria. We speak about well-known career diplomats and I expect an answer from the Presidency. There was this effervescent political period and I understood that the proposals have not been approved for now, but for the others, at least in the really important capitals, we will probably need a preliminary dialogue,” Corlatean explained.

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