Romania’s Defence Minister Mihnea Motoc and Foreign Minister Lazar Comanescu on Tuesday had a “2+2” meeting with their French counterparts, Jean-Yves Le Drian and Jean-Marc Ayrault to discuss how to intensify bilateral cooperation on current affairs on the EU and NATO agendas, the Romanian Defence Ministry (MApN) reported in a press statement.
The talks were held on the side-lines of a meeting in Brussels of the EU Foreign Affairs Council, with emphasis on the latest developments in the implementation of decisions taken at the NATO summit meeting in Warsaw and the EU Global Strategy in the areas of security and defence.
“About cooperation inside NATO, the Romanian defence and foreign ministers mentioned the context after this October’s defence ministerial meeting favourable to an efficient implementation of decisions concerning the advanced presence of NATO on its eastern flank, while emphasising the importance of the Black Sea region to the entire Euro-Atlantic security. The two officials thanked France for political support to the proposals, as well as for its concrete contributions, which main outcome will be an increase starting in 2017 of the participation of France’s military marine’s ships in Black Sea missions,” says MApN.
The meeting is also said to have been a good opportunity for the advancement of defence cooperation and the identification of optimal ways for the two countries to support the consolidation of the collective security and defence policy.
At the same time, the importance attached by the two countries to efficient coordination and cooperation between NATO and the EU in areas identified in the joint declaration passed by the leaders of the two organisations at the NATO Warsaw Summit was reconfirmed.
Romania’s Foreign Ministry (MAE) said in a press statement on Monday that this joint ministerial meeting of foreign and defence ministers was held under a decision made as part of a September 12-13, 2016 visit to Romania by French President Francois Hollande, given multiple files on which the two countries have shared positions and increased cooperation potentials.
Comanescu and Motoc discussed with their French counterparts the latest developments in and prospects for the bilateral relations between Romania and France, the main events on the European and world agendas, such as the EU-NATO relationships, said MAE.
Their conversations highlighted the joint interest of both sides in deepening bilateral, European and NATO cooperation. The ministers also looked at bilateral coordination in the area of European affairs, with emphasis on the implementation of the EU’s Global Policy and Security Strategy.
Comanescu also voiced satisfaction over the outcomes of the implementation of the roadmap for Romania-France Strategic Partnership, emphasising Romania’s firm intention to keep up the pace in implementing the bilateral projects mentioned in the document, according to MAE.
Romanian defence industry needs development chances in European context
Minister of National Defence Mihnea Motoc advocated in Brussels the chance of the Romanian defence industry and research technological sector to develop in the current European context, adding that the National Defence Ministry and the Ministry of Economy will make sure that the Romanian companies capitalize thereon.
DefMin Motoc participated November 14 – 15 in the meetings of the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) and of the European Defence Agency’s Steering Board.
According to a Defence Ministry release this Tuesday, the manner whereby the evolution of the Common Security and Defence Policy will be reflected in the future actions of the European Defence Agency is extremely important to Romania. In Brussels, Minister Motoc also advocated development opportunities for the Romanian defence industry and technological research sector in the European context.
“Together with representatives of the Ministry of Economy, we will make sure that Romanian companies, especially small and medium-sized companies and start-ups, capitalize on this chance,” said Motoc.
According to the release, the FAC meeting opened the process for the implementation of the EU Global Strategy for defence and security and set the guidelines in place for the development of the Common Security and Defence Policy.
“For Romania, an extremely important development emerged it will actively stay committed to. Some of the decisions taken will be extended until 2019, when Romania takes over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. In this context, some important elements emerged from the FAC meeting, centered on defining EU’s level of ambition on the global security scene, promoting a comprehensive, integrated, synergistic approach in close partnership with NATO. Thus, the new level of ambition is built around three major pillars – the response capacity in crisis and conflict situations, strengthening the partners’ capacity of resilience and, as a novelty, protecting the Union and its citizens,” the cited source said.
Measures were also adopted at the meetings aimed at developing military capacities, including the use of the EU’s battlegroups and the adjustment of the existing crisis management structures in the European External Action Service so as to enable the optimization of the civil-military planning process.
“All this requires a thorough analysis in the light of long-term implications. Therefore, the Defence Ministry together with the Foreign Affairs Ministry intend to launch and develop these themes in Romania. After the EU Summit in December this year, a series of round table meetings and public debates will be organized to explain in detail all these decisions,” the Defence Ministry announced.