On the occasion of the National Day of the Swiss Confederation, the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs is most honored to extend its warmest congratulations and wishes of prosperity to the Swiss people.
The First of August symbolizes the foundation of the Swiss Confederation more than seven hundred years ago. The Federal Charter, signed “at the beginning of August 1291”, marked the alliance of the three Alpine cantons of Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden and, thus, laid the foundation for Switzerland that we know today – a successful example of peace, stability and harmonious coexistence.
Romania and the Swiss Confederation enjoy 108 years of diplomatic relations, which are underpinned by a dynamic bilateral dialogue and by constantly growing political and economic ties.
In 2018, the bilateral economic exchanges exceeded 850 million euro. At the same time, since Romania became a fully-fledged EU Member State, the Swiss entrepreneurs have become increasingly motivated to bring their business to our country. Currently, there are more than 3,000 Swiss companies active on the Romanian market, the value of the Swiss investments reaching almost 1.2 billion euro.
Romania and Switzerland attach great importance to the European values, which is equally reflected at bilateral level. Thus, Romania’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union during the first semester of 2019 was an excellent opportunity to capitalize on the similar views we share with regard to the future of Europe. At the same time, we are happy that beginning with 1st of June 2019, the Romanian citizens are granted the same unrestricted free movement rights in the Swiss Confederation.
Since its inception in 2010, the Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme has contributed substantially to strengthening our bilateral cooperation especially in the areas covered by the various projects, such as promoting economic growth and business support, improving working conditions, promoting sustainable energy management, public safety and security, education, research, and supporting the civil society. Aiming at reducing economic and social disparities within the enlarged European Union and at increasing cohesion, the Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme proves to be yet another example of the excellent cooperation, on one hand, between our national authorities, and, on the other hand, between the public authorities and NGOs.
Romania and Switzerland are connected through strong social and educational ties. This year we mark three decades of a very dynamic partnership with Operation Romanian Villages – Switzerland (OVR-CH), a model of genuine European solidarity. The cooperation with the OVR-CH has been very diverse: from prompt first aid relief for villages affected by floods, to improving the living conditions in targeted rural areas, to over 50 OVR partnerships at the level of associations, municipalities and individuals, to bridging Swiss and Romanian communities, which lead to meaningful bonds and friendships woven over the years.
The State Secretariat of Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) provides scholarships that allow young people from Romania to spend a limited period in Switzerland in order to acquire additional professional experience. Moreover, our countries share a common cultural and linguistic heritage proven by their affiliation to the International Organization of Francophonie.
We look forward to further strengthening our bilateral relation and we trust that our cooperation will deliver many successful outcomes.
On this important day, we would also like to convey our sincerest congratulations to the Swiss community living in Romania.
Congratulations on your National Day!