Jean Asselborn: EU member states 100pct fulfilling technical criteria should be allowed in the Schengen Area

Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn (photo L)  on Wednesday said in Bucharest that all the European Union member states that are 100 per cent fulfilling the technical criteria for joining the border-free Schengen Area should be allowed to do so, provided there is also political will.

He said that as far as Romania and Bulgaria’s accession to the Schengen Area are concerned, there is a small blockage and a key should be found to unblock the situation.

“There has been a small blockage ever since four years ago, when you completed all the technical preparations. In my opinion, the key to unblock the situation has to be found. What I can do in my capacity as president of the European Council is try and talk the matter with Germany and France,” Asselborn told a joint press conference with Romania’s Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu.

He added that additional efforts are needed to present to Germany, France and the Netherlands arguments in favour of Romania’s accession to the Schengen Area. He said that if such discussions echoed with Germany, October would be a good month to find the key to the problem.

“I believe that all the European Union member states that have hundred per cent prepared the ground in technical terms and have the political will should be allowed to join the Schengen Area, and that is what we will be doing,” said Asselborn.


Aurescu: We would like to see more Luxembourgian investors in Romania


In his turn, Romania’s Foreign Minister Aurescu said Romania is counting on the Luxembourgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union for progress with its accession to the Schengen Area

Aurescu said that he would like to see more investors from Luxembourg opening up shop in Romania, mentioning that Luxembourg is currently ranked 9th in the ranking of foreign investors in Romania, with more than 2 billion euros worth of investment.

The Romanian chief diplomat said there is an excellent cooperation potential between the two countries and that the visit to Romania of Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn is a signal about the excellent quality of the bilateral relationship.

‘The visit occurred at a symbolic time in our bilateral relations, because on April 25 we will celebrate 10 years since Luxembourg signed Romania’s accession treaty to the European Union. (…) Mr Minister’s visit is happening ahead of the start of the Luxembourgian Presidency of the European Union Council in the second half of 2015,’ Aurescu told a joint press conference with Asselborn.

He added that they reviewed aspects of the bilateral relationship as well as aspects of European affairs and the state of regional security.

‘We also discussed the situation in the region, Moldova and Ukraine. I appreciated especially the ratification by Luxembourg’s Parliament of the association and free trade agreements with Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia,’ said Aurescu.

He mentioned that also discussed were topics related to NATO, such as the reassurance measures taken by NATO on the Eastern flank of the alliance, Romania included.

‘We also discussed the revision of the European Union’s security strategy required in the current complicated context east and south of the EU. Any strategy has to be highly pragmatic and adjusted to the very dynamic developments in our neighbourhoods. We have to keep in mind the diversification of threats facing the European Union today,’ said Aurescu.

After the press conference, the two ministers joined head of the European Commission Representation in Bucharest Angela Filote in a conference called ’10 years since the signing of the accession agreement. Luxembourg and Romania, partners for deepening European integration’, Agerpres informs.


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