Romania’s foreign and security policy will remain on the same essential coordinates as until now, in the context in which our country must keep its regional position of stability and predictability pillar, President Klaus Iohannis said in the opening of the meeting with the foreign ambassadors accredited in Bucharest, taking place at the Cotroceni Palace in Bucharest.
“I want to assure you that Romania’s foreign and security policy will remain on the same essential coordinates as until now. Romania must maintain itself in the region as a stability and predictability pillar,” the head of state underscored.
President Iohannis brought to mind that Romania has a new Parliament and Government, resulted following the December 2016 elections. The head of state pointed out that the elections unfolded in the best conditions from a democratic and organisation point of view. Moreover, the President highlighted as positive the fact that no extremist party entered Parliament, which eloquently proves the maturity of the Romanian society.
“The new year finds Romania with a new Parliament and a new Government, following the elections that took place on the 11th of December 2016, which were held in the best conditions, from a democratic and organisational point of view. It is a positive fact that no extremist, xenophobic or Europhobic parties managed to secure seats in the legislative body; this shows eloquently the maturity of the Romanian society,” he said.
Klaus Iohannis pointed out that in Romania the rule of law must be further strengthened and the economic stability must be kept, and in this respect the Government has a “special responsibility.”
“From a political point of view, Romania must remain, in our region, a pillar of stability and predictability. We must continue to strengthen the rule of law and to maintain economic stability, based on the current sustainable growth, which, in 2016, according to available data, was the highest in the European Union, (4,8%). I must stress that the new Government of Romania will have a very special responsibility in this regard.
During out last year’s reunion, I underlined that “Romania is strong in its determination to be a source of stability and democracy in a complicated region, in the consistency and predictability of its actions in relation with its foreign partners and in its loyalty to values and principles”. These words still stand today, Iohannis underlined.
“Our foreign policy pillars remain partnership with US, and EU and NATO consolidation”
President Klaus Iohannis stated that the fundamental pillars of Romania’s foreign policy remain deepening the Partnership with the United States of America and consolidation with the EU and NATO.
” The essential pillars of our foreign policy remain the same: the deepening of our Strategic Partnership with the United States and the consolidation of the European Union and NATO. Therefore, I am confident that the Romanian-American Strategic Partnership, which this year turns 20 years since its launching, will continue to develop and to deepen. The new American administration will be installed at the White House these coming days, with a new President, Mr. Donald Trump, to whom I reiterate my wishes for a very successful mandate, one that involves a great deal of responsibility, not just for the United States of America, but for the entire world. The numerous contacts, including those at high level, which I had after November’s elections, reconfirmed the clear and firm commitment of the USA toward its partnership with Romania”, stated President Iohannis .
He used the opportunity to also express Romania’s will to” closely work with the American partners in order to give even more substance to the essential dimensions of our strategic partnership”.
In the political-military and security field, Iohannis said, we will intensify our cooperation in the implementation of the Warsaw Summit decisions, as well as on preparing this year’s Summit.
“Moreover, we will continue to develop our bilateral cooperation in combating terrorism, which is a first priority for us.
Romania will also have to continue to increase the defence spending in order to secure 2% of GDP in 2017, as we have committed to do since the beginning of my tenure, by consensus of all political parties, and as the new governmental coalition had promised to do, even today. Thus, we are assuming our burden sharing in acquiring international security, within NATO, and not only.
We will also have to cooperate with the United States to enhance the economic dimension of our partnership, including as investments are concerned, as well as regarding the research, innovation, and education dimension, as well as Visa Waiver,” the head of the state added.
“Romania will have to be a serious contributor, engaged and very active in the debate concerning the future of the European project”
As for the goal of consolidating the European Union, President Iohannis underlined that , “Romania will have to be a serious contributor, engaged and very active in the debate concerning the future of the European project”.
“A deepening of the reflection process should lead to a Union focused on pragmatic and coherent results, a more flexible Union, closer to the European citizens.
We want a deepening of the European integration, which we consider to be a solution to the multiple crises that Europe is currently facing. We have to and we want to be part of the Union’s integration core, a strategic aim which concerns our development in the long run.
In this context, let me reiterate our strategic priorities: the internal and external security of the Union, economic growth, job creation, especially for the youth, internal market consolidation. The Romanian citizens – which are the most pro-EU ones – need a more pragmatic, coherent and flexible Union, which respects is principles and fundamental values. They need a stronger, more prosperous, safer and, most importantly, a more credible Union. We must act firmly in this regard, “ he said.
He stated that Romania is ready to take part in the negotiations regarding Brexit. “ We consider that the result of the negotiations should fully reflect the preservation of Romanian workers’ rights. I must also remind you that it is in our best interest to consolidate the strategic cooperation with UK, which is important for Romania, but for Europe’s security as well.
We will have to intensify the preparations for taking over the Presidency of the EU Council in 2019, so that we will be able to secure a successful mandate. I am counting on your assistance, in this regard. We must also support actively and in a concrete manner the process of implementation of the new EU Global Strategy,” the Head of the State also told the Diplomatic Corps.
As for the objective to consolidate NATO, President Klaus Iohannis emphasized that Romania will act towards the full implementation of the decisions taken at the last year’s Summit, which adopted the most appropriate decisions in order to strengthen the Eastern flank, including Romania, through the forward presence.
“ I am glad to notice tangible progress in the operationalization of the multinational brigade, in the intensification of the rhythm of the NATO naval exercises in the Black Sea, with the participation of more and more Allies, as well as the progress made regarding the commitment of important allies towards more air presence in Romania, allies to whom I want to thank again.
We should also focus on the adequate preparation of this year’s Summit, which will be not only the first one that the new American President will attend, but also one which must further NATO’s adaptation process to the new complex security environment.
This Summit, which has to be of a strategic character, will have to continue the debate started in Warsaw regarding NATO’s new defence and deterrence policy. It should kick-start a reflection processes regarding the Alliance’s relation to Russia and the necessity to update the Strategic Concept adopted in 2010, as well to identify new ways of supporting NATO’s partners. Moreover, it should examine the ways in which the Alliance could become more involved in the fight against terrorism.
In this context, Romania will continue to support the development of the Bucharest Format, which is extremely useful in pursuing the results of last year’s NATO Summit. Thus, we are going to support the organisation of a new reunion of heads of state or government, in Poland,” Iohannis added.
President Iohannis reiterates Romania’s firm support for the European future of the Republic of Moldova
Romania’s President used the occasion to reiterate Bucharest expectations that the new President of the Republic of Moldova “will act in accordance with his constitutional prerogatives”.
“I say this also in the light of his most recent statements. In spite of these, Romania will continue to support the European path of the Republic of Moldova,” said Klaus Iohannis.
“ Republic of Moldova needs stability, responsible involvement – and I am highlighting the word “responsible” – of all political and institutional factors, as far as the continuation and consolidation of its reform process. These domestic reforms are essential for the modernization of the state, as well as for getting closer to the European Union, for the benefit of all citizens of the Republic of Moldova,” he added.
To this purpose and on this basis, he has reaffirmed Romania’s firm support for the European future of the Republic of Moldova.
“ I must highlight my country’s willingness, in this context, towards the development of the Strategic Partnership for the European integration of the Republic of Moldova, as well to further continue the bilateral cooperation projects with the Government and the local authorities in the Republic of Moldova.
Therefore, at the last meeting of Romania’s Supreme Council for National Defence (CSAT), an Action Plan concerning Romania’s strategic approach on the relation with the Republic of Moldova was adopted. Our strategic objective, as it reflected in this plan, is to support the clear, irreversible orientation of the Republic of Moldova towards the European Union, the pro-European connection of Chişinău, as well as the existence of strong institutions and a solid democracy. Romania can and must play a key role in this process, and it should invest more. Romania’s effort should be systemized and focused institutionally for the results to be concrete and tangible for the citizens of the Republic of Moldova,” the Head of the State added.
“Romania should further develop its European strategic partnerships, bilateral relations”
Romania should further develop its European strategic partnerships and bilateral relations, it must stress on the economic dimension in its relations with Central Asia, Middle East countries, while the ties with the states of Asia, Latin America and Africa must be more actively promoted, President Klaus Iohannis also said on Wednesday at the annual meeting with the foreign ambassadors accredited in Bucharest.
Klaus Iohannis emphasised the importance of deepening strategic partnerships, relations with Germany, France and Italy, which “have received a strong impulse following the visits to Bucharest in 2016 of my German, French and Italian counterparts. The commencement in November 2016 of the mechanism of strategic dialogue with France, on Foreign and Defence minsters level, following my proposal which was accepted by President Hollande, upon his state visit, is an example to be followed on other bilateral coordinates, too.”
“At the same time, the strategic partnership with Poland must be continued. The importance of it in the field of ensuring security on regional level, as well as in regards to the European topics, the ones where we have joint goals, is obvious. We should also polish the strategic partnership with Turkey, an essential ally for the region’s stability. We count on the ceaseless commitment of Turkey to the values, principles and obligations taken within NATO and its relationship with the European Union. In the regional context, the Romania – Poland – Turkey informal trilateral meeting on security is a relevant format we should continue and develop further,” said Iohannis.
The close cooperation with the Baltic states and a firm commitment to supporting European and Euro-Atlantic integration for Western Balkans states, will also be included in Romania’s diplomatic action for 2017, said the President adding that on the foreign affairs agenda there will also be “the development of the relationship with Ukraine, against the background of the very good results of President Poroşenko’s visit to Romania last year, will also be on the agenda”.
“Central Asia and Middle East cannot be neglected, with the focus being on economic cooperation, but not only. From the same economic angle, Romanian diplomacy should be more active in promoting relations with the states from Asia, Latin America and Africa,” the President also emphasized in his speech on Romania’s foreign policy held during the annual meeting with the Diplomatic Corps.