PM Dacian Ciolos was welcomed by French Government’s Secretary of State for European Affairs Harlem Desir and a ceremonial guard on Wednesday at Hotel National des Invalides in Paris.
The national anthems of Romania and France were sung and the Romanian Premier reviewed the ceremonial guard which then paraded before the Head of the Romanian Government, Agerpres informs.
After the ceremony, Dacian Ciolos left for the Elysee Palace where he was met by French President Francois Hollande, with whom he had a tete-a-tete meeting.
At the joint press opportunity with President Francois Hollande, Premier Dacian Ciolos stated that through the talks held at the Elysee Palace “we have added new bricks” to a solid foundation of cooperation between Romania and France, one of the topics tackled being the intensification of economic relations.
“We met like the old friends that I consider Romania and France to be. We have added, so to speak, new bricks to a very solid and consistent platform, foundation of cooperation between Romania and France in these last decades, cooperation both for local development, relations between our communities, but also a very close political, economic cooperation; we are linked by a strategic partnership that is already showing good results, we have in Romania the consistent presence of large economic, industrial French groups in the auto manufacturing, aeronautics, public utilities, water management, energy domains, and I suggested that on this solid foundation and on this mutual knowledge of the economic environment we should intensify our economic, trade relations, by also taking advantage of the fact that Romania, for a while now, is proving that she is a stable economy,” PM Ciolos said.
“The Government I lead is coming up with an economic programme that seeks to ensure predictability for the economic environment and to put to good use the Romanian economy’s growth potential,” Ciolos added.
In this context, the Head of Government pointed out that he has suggested that “we should intensify our economic relations on this solid foundation,” by taking advantage of the fact that Romania has a stable economy, is one of the EU states with the highest economic growth, and the government wants to ensure predictability for the business environment.
The Premier said that he has suggested the presence of French SMEs in the agrofood and energy domain and in the development of the laser at Magurele, pointing out that “there is a growing interest in France in getting involved in putting this platform to good use.”
“Romania supports border control consolidation projects”
Likewise, the Romanian Premier and the French President also talked about the migration issue that preoccupies the European Union.
“I have evoked the migration issue and I have confirmed the fact that Romania supports border control consolidation projects. (…) I have confirmed that we plan to continue doing our job from this point of view and we hope that Romania’s contribution to border control would be recognized alongside the criteria that Romania has already met in order to accede to the Schengen Area, at least in a first stage, with the opening of air communications, airports, of course, confirming that we are interested in joining a solid, consolidated and credible Schengen Area and, from this point of view Romania will support any initiative that goes in this direction.”
Francois Hollande: “I confirm I will visit Romania later this year”
At the joint press conference, the French President stated that he talked with Ciolos about the joint goals in the research, defence and education domains, but also about the situation in Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova.
“I evoked culture, research, economy, defence. Likewise, we tackled foreign policy topics, giving Europe the role she has to take on the issue of Ukraine, Republic of Moldova for example, we want to associate Republic of Moldova to the development we want,” Francois Hollande said.
At the same time, he confirmed that he accepted the invitation to visit Romania later this year, an invitation recently extended by President Klaus Iohannis.
“I confirm I will visit Romania this year,” Hollande said at the end of his meeting with Ciolos.
Premier Dacian Ciolos had previously stated that he reiterated the invitation that President Klaus Iohannis had extended to the French Head of State and that the two countries will jointly prepare the 100-year anniversary of the National Union of 1918.
Subsequently, Ciolos attended a dinner offered by Hollande, alongside Premier Manuel Valls and other members of the French Government.
PM Dacian Ciolos’ visit includes meetings with French Republic Senate President Gerard Larcher and with National Assembly President Claude Bartolone, but also meetings with representatives of the Romanian community in France. At the Sciences PO French Institute of Political Studies, the head of Government will meet a group of Romanian students and master’s degree students, on which occasion he will deliver a speech on the benefits of joining the EU and Romania’s vision on the European project.
Besides the talks with the French high officials on common interest topics, the two-day visit will also have an economic component, since a meeting with representatives of the French business environment is also scheduled during the visit, the Government informs.
On Wednesday evening, Ciolos attended the concert marking the National Day of Romanian Culture, a concert given by maestro Eugen Doga and organised by Romania’s Embassy in Paris, together with the Embassy of the Republic of Moldova.
The Prime Minister will also pay a visit to great sculptor Constantin Brancusi’s workshop, which is currently a museum.
The official delegation consists of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Economy, Trade and Relations with the Business Environment Costin Borc, head of the Prime Minister’s Chancellery Dragos Tudorache, Foreign Affairs Minister Lazar Comanescu and Culture Minister Vlad Alexandrescu.