Celebrating Greater Romania’s Centenary while preparing to take over the helm of Greater Europe is a unique moment. This is a time to honor the past, to make the best of the present and work for a better future for all Romanians, regardless of the country where they’ve decided to live, study or work. This is the time to embrace everything that makes us a great nation and to celebrate what makes us different as human beings and citizens of this country. I strongly believe that none of the things that may divide us is stronger than all the things that bring us together.
We have 10 million Romanians abroad, in both the diaspora and the historical communities, and they are part of this nation just as much as those who reside within our borders. Thinking back to what we’ve accomplished during the past 100 years makes me proud and humble at the same time. It is with the upmost conviction that I say Romania’s greatest value and richness resides in its people. In this sense, during this Centenary Year, the Ministry for Romanians Abroad implemented a project which aimed to emphasize Romania’s elites from abroad.
We discovered remarkable individuals, pillars of their respective communities and in some cases, not few, pillars of their countries of residence, all of which shared a special bond with their Romanian identity. During this project, entitled “100 Personalities for 100 Years”, I’ve had the opportunity to meet countless of distinguished Romanians from many of the countries in which we have significant Romanian communities, who contribute to the preservation of the unity and national identity of Romanian society in a beautiful way. The feeling of belonging is what seals their bond with their Romanian identity. Even if they live abroad, far from their roots, Romanians tend to think, speak and pray in their native tongue. They are very fond of the Romanian cuisine and traditions, which they highly promote all over the world. All Romanians abroad are a priority on my agenda and they represent true ambassadors of our country. It’s our commitment to all Romanians who decide to live abroad to offer them assistance and support in order to keep their ethic, cultural and spiritual identity. We need to keep their Romanian spark alive.
From teachers to construction workers, from scientists to nurses, all Romanians add value to the communities in which they have chosen to live. By doing so, they make us proud. What is also important is for them to believe, to know, that their country of origin represents a solid alternative for their families, expertise and businesses.
For those who are open to the idea of returning home, we are working on measures to facilitate their reintegration. We want to assure all Romanians from abroad see in our country not only “an” option, but “the” option.
Having noted the ongoing transformations of the globalized world, I think that it’s more adequate than ever to affirm that information is power. I am encouraging all Romanians Abroad to stay informed, to be aware of their rights and obligations. Important challenges, such as Brexit, for instance, request for all Romanians living in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to access information about their future status, even though the agreement on Brexit still has to be validated in London. Our Ministry, along with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, is available for requests for information and counseling on Brexit, as we want to stand by our Romanian nationals and do our best to meet their needs. It’s important to stay in touch with our fellow Romanians in the UK and we are doing that by being in constant contact with their associations and representatives, by organizing working visits. We’ve also created an e-mail address, firstname.lastname@example.org, as a tool that Romanians can use in order to get the information they need.
I hope that during such a meaningful event for this country, namely the Centenary of the Great Union, we can draw the strength and the drive to continue our efforts in securing welfare, freedom and peace for all our nationals, while working together with our European and Trans-Atlantic partners for a bright future.
Happy Anniversary, Romania! Happy anniversary to all our Romanians!