On the occasion of the National Day of the Kingdom of Norway, it is with great pleasure that we convey our sincere congratulations and best wishes to the Norwegian people.
On this day, we are celebrating the National and Constitution day of Norway. In 1814 Norway left the union with Denmark and agreed on a new constitution, the Norwegian Constitution of 17th of May, 1814. Changes have been made, of course, but today, over two centuries later, the Norwegian constitution is still the basis for the Norwegian political system, making it one of the oldest in the world.
Although Romania and Norway are placed in two opposite parts of Europe, there is much we have in common. We are two large countries with access to the sea, we are allies in NATO and we share similar challenges and strategic positions. The fundamental values that drive our relationship have constantly brought us closer.
The economic relations between our countries continue to be rich and dynamic, with Norwegian capital amounting around 81 million euros. The volume of economic exchanges doubled during the last year, reaching over half billion euros and including products that incorporate advanced technology and high standards. We are confident about the very good potential for further development of the economic side of our relation, valorizing the highly skilled human capital of our countries and the attractive economic environment for business.
We would also like to express our appreciation for Norway’s support for the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, both through the EEA and Norway Grants and through meaningful participation to the events organised by Romania under our common goal of “Cohesion, a Common European Value”.
The excellent bilateral Romanian-Norwegian relations provide an appropriate framework for intensifying the political and economic cooperation between our countries. The bilateral dialogue has been consolidated recently with the visit of the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs to Bucharest on December 3rd, 2018. The visit was an important occasion to review the Romanian-Norwegian cooperation and to give and additional impetus to our work together.
While mentioning the excellent level of bilateral relations one should not forget another positive aspect of this relation, the human connections. Research activities, tourism and cultural relations, student exchange and the well-integrated communities of our two countries have fostered partnerships in various fields and social cohesion.
We also have a close partnership developed through the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism and the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. Beginning with 2007, the EEA/Norway Grants have contributed significantly to the development of bilateral relations. We convey our appreciation for the projects carried out under this framework and expressed the hope that the successes registered are a very good prerequisite for further expanding our cooperation.
At the same time, we salute the celebration, this year, of 25 years of cooperation under the European Economic Area Agreement, a balanced and flexible treaty, offering our countries the possibility to enjoy the four fundamental freedoms. Following up on this success, we are convinced that our cooperation in European and multilateral formats will continue to contribute significantly to the development of our two countries.
We have a good ground to build upon. The Romanian-Norwegian bilateral relation provides a good foundation and has an important potential for cooperation in a wide range of areas, economic, political and people-to-people partnerships. Looking ahead, we are ready to strengthen our cooperation even further.
Gratulerer med nasjonaldagen!