On the occasion of the National Day of the Czech Republic I may proudly say that relations between my country and Romania have been steadily developing.
Twenty-two years ago, by signing the Agreement on Friendly Relations and Cooperation, the democratically elected representations of the Czech Republic and Romania started a new era of the traditional alliance between our two nations. We are close partners in both EU and NATO, and also our economic and cultural links are very strong.
We have had some important political visits this year including the Czech Deputy Foreign Minister to Romania in March, a Special Envoy for Holocaust issues and combatting anti-Semitism of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic in May, a delegation of the Committee for Legal Matters, Discipline and Immunities of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of Romania to the Czech Republic in April as well as of the Committee for Agriculture, Forestry, Food Industry and Specific Services in June.
The Czech companies feel welcome in Romania – around 800 our companies operate in the country, and most of them proved to be good examples of responsible investment. However, there is still potential for more investment, if the conditions are right and the current investors are treated fairly, and there is also a lot of space to increase the volume of trade over the current 3.3 billion EUR.
Besides organizing business fora and round tables, we are also proud to organize events where culture meets economics like “120 Years of Success of Laurin & Klement/ŠKODA” in Bucharest and Constanta this spring.
For Romanians, Czech culture is much in demand and we are happy to contribute – both the Embassy and the Czech Center, which co-organized a very successful exhibition of currently most appreciated Czech conceptual artist Jiří Kovanda in the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Bucharest from July to October.
This June, the Czech Foreign Minister awarded the Bucharest University´s Prof. Anca Irina Ionescu the Gratias Agit Prize for promoting the Czech Republic in Romania through her lifetime teaching of the Czech language and her translation activity.
We are looking into the future, but we can´t forget history. A delegation of the Czech Ministry of Defence participated at a religious and military ceremonial at the monument to fallen heroes in Medgidia on 3 September 2016 to commemorate 100 years of the battles in Dobruja, where many Czech soldiers participated and died.