President Klaus Iohannis convened on Monday a new round of consultations with Premier Dacian Ciolos, National Bank of Romania (BNR) Governor Mugur Isarescu and the leaders of parliamentary parties.
Other participants were National Liberal Party Co-chairs Alina Gorghiu and Vasile Blaga, Social Democrat Party Chair Liviu Dragnea, National Union for Romania’s Progress head Valeriu Steriu, Romanian Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) Co-Chair Daniel Constantin, Democratic Union of Hungarians of Romania Chair Hunor Kelemen, the leader of the parliamentary group of national minorities, Varujan Pambuccian, presidential advisers Leonard Orban and Cosmin Marinescu, and the head of the Prime Minister’s Chancellery Ioan Dragos Tudorache.
Senate Speaker and ALDE Co-Chair Calin Popescu-Tariceanu did not participate due to some prior commitments, his spokesman Andrei Alexandru announced.
The consultations focused on the situation created following the referendum in the United Kingdom. The meeting took place in order for the conclusions of last week’s European Council summit to be presented.
According to a communique released by the Presidency before the meeting, Klaus Iohannis proposed the setting up of a working group that would evaluate the impact of United Kingdom’s decision on Romania, would identify the measures called for in this context, “as well as the opportunities that could appear for Romania in the situation thus created.”
Iohannis: The national project will be devised by a working group
President Klaus Iohannis stated on Monday, following his consultations with the parties, the Government and the BNR Governor, that there is the need for a new national project for Romania of the future within the European Union.
“They all agreed to take part in devising this new national project, a post-accession project that comes basically 10 years after Romania became member of the European Union.”
The President said that this national project will be devised by a working group that will work with the Romanian Presidency. “This working group can work, in the optimal option, here at the Presidency, even during an elections year. I want to emphasise the very constructive character of the talks we have had and the fact that all political leaders have taken on this project. Such a national project can become functional only if it is consensually adopted, approved, backed.”
“Unfortunately, in Romania we’ve had rather many so-called national projects, strategies, that were neither implemented nor did they last because the political consensus lacked. This time, we will jointly devise this national project that will guide Romania’s path in the European Union over the medium and long-term. We will establish which is Romania’s place, Romania’s role and Romania’s level of ambition in the European Union,” the Head of State concluded.
On June 30, the Presidential Administration announced that President Klaus Iohannis will invite the Prime Minister, the Central Bank’s Governor and party leaders to a new round of consultations, an occasion to inform them on the conclusions of the European Council held in Brussels on 28-29 June.
“During the consultations, President Klaus Iohannis will propose the setting up of a working group to assess the impact on our country of the UK’s decision, identify the measures required in this context, as well as opportunities that may arise for Romania in the resulting situation,” the Presidential Administration informed.
The President held the first round of consultations in the same format on 24 June before the European Council summit too. The President stated back then that it is clear for everyone that the European Union has a lot of work to do.
“We have to redefine the European project, we have to make it better, easier to understand, more efficient. The same things go for Romania too,” Klaus Iohannis added.
The President stated that Romania had political consensus and political will for accession to the European Union but there was no post-accession project.
“Now is the time to make up for the lost time, it’s time to devise a new national project. I can assure Romanians that this crisis presents opportunities for Romania,” Iohannis added.
After the European Council summit, the President said that in the upcoming negotiations Romania will give priority to defending the interests of the Romanian community, with there already being assurances that the community will not stand to suffer at this moment.
“The British Premier was very firm in what concerns the future of the United Kingdom and said very clearly that the United Kingdom will respect the referendum, this clearly meaning that when everybody is ready there will be negotiations over United Kingdom’s exit from the EU. (…) It’s fairly clear that we will not have a notification from the United Kingdom by the autumn of this year and consequently we won’t have something to negotiate,” the Head of State said in Brussels.