US Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and Eurasia Wess Mitchell on Monday stated in Bucharest that Romania has built a strong judiciary system and anti-corruption institutions that the victims of communism wouldn’t have dared to dream of.
“Romania has built a judicial system and anti-corruption institutions that are so strong that the victims of communism wouldn’t have even dared to dream of,” Wess Mitchell said in his speech at the Faculty of Law in Bucharest.
The Romanian economy is one of the most dynamic in Europe, he also remarked.
“Romania is part of the European Union, with an increased GDP. Romania’s economy is one of the most dynamic in Europe, having faced an increase of almost 7 per cent last year,” said Wess Mitchell.
According to him, Romania is the symbol of freedom at the Eastern border, which proves even more the fact that this country has developed in the past years and became a very important geopolitical spot.
US official about modifications brought to justice laws in Romania: We don’t want any setbacks
Asked what was his opinion on the modifications brought to the justice laws in Romania, Mitchell stated that this country has made progresses in having a strong judicial system and “a setback” must be avoided.
“As far as the United States is concerned, I have to say how important the progress made by Romania in having a strong judicial system and anti-corruption institutions is. I don’t want to get involved in any internal affairs or internal political matters, but what I want to say is that all the allies and America support the anti-corruption institutions. You are a model. If you take a look, there are few countries that have a judicial system as strong as yours and I believe this should inspire and encourage Romanians to continue to develop these institutions, which are very important for Romania’s democracy. You have made progress and we do not want you to take a step back,” stated Wess Mitchell.
“I advise Romanian leaders to put law above politics; anti-corruption fight a marathon, not a sprint”
Anti-corruption fight is “a marathon, not a sprint,” and Romania is facing “a very important time” right now, during this marathon, US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Wess Mitchell said on Monday, after holding a speech at the Faculty of Law in Bucharest.
Regarding the request that the Romanian President remove from office the head of the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA), Laura Codruta Kovesi, Mitchell said: “I believe this is a matter that must be solved by the Romanian citizens and their leaders through the constitutional mechanisms at hand.”
He also added that the US Department of State is monitoring the situation “closely.”
“Anti-corruption fight is a marathon, not a sprint. I believe that you are facing a very important time during this marathon right now and I trust that the institutions in Romania and the Romanian leaders will do what it’s right,” Mitchell pointed out.
The American official also spoke about the progress made by Romania in fighting corruption, and the support granted by the USA in the anti-corruption field.
“Romania’s progress, in the past years, in what the anti-corruption fight is concerned, is significant. USA supports the Romanian anti-corruption institutions and your fight against corruption in general. I believe that President Trump said it very clearly last year, in the Garden of Roses, that we will always be supporting Romania’s anti-corruption fight,” he said.
Wess Mitchell also underscored that this “is not the time” for the standards established following these efforts were made “to degrade.”
“I won’t get involved in any internal political matters and I won’t make statements related to this. I will only say that the judicial and anti-corruption institutions in Romania are very important, including for the example they represent for the region, and for Romania, as a strong democracy. I believe this is not the time to see how these standards degrade, for I believe that Romania has made extraordinary progress and I would advise Romanian leaders to put the law above politics and not to bring politics in the law field,” Mitchell said.
According to the US official, developments in this field are being watched “very closely.” “I won’t go into more detail in relation to the exchange of political remarks, but I believe it is clear as daylight that we will continue to send this message, from the President downwards, that the USA support the anti-corruption institutions in Romania, as a pillar of your democracy, and we will continue to monitor the situation closely,” Wess Mitchell pointed out.
“I hope that Parliament will adopt law on offshore to encourage investments”
USA hopes that the Romanian Parliament will adopt a law on offshore to encourage investments, US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Wess Mitchell said after delivering a speech at the Faculty of Law in Bucharest.
When asked his opinion on the delays in Parliament related to this matter, the US official said that Romania is blessed with plenty of natural resources and has a unique opportunity to support not only energy security of South-East Europe, but also diversification in Europe, in general – that is a part offshore, a part onshore.
More than that, Mitchell spoke about our country’s chance to become an important player in the energy security field.
In his opinion, from Romania’s perspective the prospect for the country to become a natural gas exporter is an enthusiastic one, and not just because of the impact it would have in Europe, but also considering the number of jobs and investments it would bring in Romania. According to the US official, the USA is watching closely all these developments, hoping that the Parliament will adopt a law on offshore that will encourage investments through tax related mechanics and by the manner in which such law will be structured. He also said that, in his opinion, in the long run, the solution for Romania was to systematically create an environment where its resources will support European energy in a broader sense.