Foreign Affairs Minister Bogdan Aurescu, speaking at the 3rd Atlantic-Black Sea Security Forum, declared that Romania wants to involve in the activity of the Euro-Atlantic Resilience Center (E-ARC) that opened Monday in Bucharest not only the best Romanian experts, but also experts from EU and NATO members, as well from partner countries in the region.
According to Aurescu, E-ARC – a project Romania has been working on for nine months now – is a body that will not compete with other centers of excellence, but will focus on specific areas.
“We will focus on: societal resilience, on our partners’ resilience in terms of negative interference from outside the European and NATO space. If we want to be resilient, our neighbors and partners in the neighborhood should be resilient as well, we must help them build their own capacities to withstand and respond to risks, challenges and threats. We will focus on the resilience of infrastructure: communications infrastructure, transport infrastructure. We will also focus on areas of interest, such as the response to emerging and disruptive technologies; all these will be structured in seven working groups within the E-ARC. We will try to attract not only the best Romanian experts in the field, but also experts from the EU and NATO member states and from our partners in the region,” the Foreign Minister explained the activity of E-ARC in a nutshell.
According to Aurescu, the working groups will carry out their activity in a “systemic, interconnected manner” where transport infrastructure is crucial not only for society but also for the economy and military mobility.
“As far as communication is concerned it is absolutely obvious: cyber security and the resilience of communication networks is very important to ensure the efficiency of the response in a crisis situation. We will also have a group to handle the continuity of governance and the ability to cope with crises. All these groups will work in a systemic, interconnected manner,” he said.
The Minister stressed the importance of promoting best practices and counteracting inappropriate reactions, noting that during the pandemic there were also certain unilateral approaches or individualistic behaviors.
“Resilience means first and foremost getting in the best shape the good reactions we had during the crisis: more solidarity, more international cooperation. At European level – setting up the EU4Health program; at NATO level – see what the response was to the needs of member states and partners, and the NATO Pandemic Response Trust Fund was very effective in helping allies and partners. We used NATO airlift capabilities to transport medical equipment. For example, Romania was the first member country of the Alliance to use the strategic air transport capabilities to bring essential medical equipment from South Korea during the pandemic, and then we helped others because we were the first EU country to use the RescEU Mechanism and we helped member states and partners,” said Aurescu.
The Aspen Institute Romania, in partnership with the Bucharest office of German Marshall Fund of the US, organized its third edition of the Atlantic-Black Sea Security Forum – Democratic Security and Resilience in the Era of Great Power Competition, a high level international event, which is taking place during the period of May 31 – June 2, in a hybrid format.
The event, which debuted on Monday at the Military National Circle, enjoyed the support from the Ministry of National Defence and Ministry of Foreign Affairs – institutional partners, NATO – co-sponsor, the UK Aspen Institute and True Story Project.
This year’s edition referred to the technological progress and their impact on security, with an emphasis on resilience, considering the strategic challenges from the Black Sea and Mediterranean Sea areas, as well as the adjacent regions.
Within the debates, there was an expression of appreciation that the newly begun decade proposes a new reality, focused on a reviewed definition of security, now a global and comprehensive concept, and the latest global evolutions, such as the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, shows that we are living in a inter-connected world in which the security of democracies that have a set of common values depends on a common approach.
As such, public policies need to be centered on the resilience of the entire society and cooperation, with the purpose of combating common threats, those were some of the conclusions of the event in Bucharest, where Bogdan Aurescu, Minister of Foreign Affairs, took the floor in the first part, Maros Sefcovic, Vice President of the European Commission, Florin Pogonaru – chairman of the Romania Aspen Institute, MEP Cristian Busoi, Christina Verchere – OMV Petrom, where the moderator was Alina Inayeh, the representative of German Marshall Fund of the United States – Bucharest Office.
Atlantic – Black Sea Security Form addresses and serves decision-makers, experts and the general public, offering a regional platform for debating economic and security policies.
Geoana: I believe NATO, EU represent a unitary platform for resilience approach in an integrated way
NATO and the European Union represent a unitary platform regarding the approach of resilience, declared, on Monday, the deputy of NATO secretary general, Mircea Geoana, within the third edition of the Atlantic-Black Sea Security Forum, event organized by the Aspen Institute Romania, in partnership with the Bucharest office of German Marshall Fund of the US.
“It is very important for NATO and EU to rely on each other,” Geoana said, adding that he came to Bucharest in order to be present at the inauguration of the Euro-Atlantic Center for Resilience (E-ARC).
According to him, the COVID-19 pandemic reshaped the world, the European community, as well as the transatlantic one.
“We began looking more closely at the way in which we can ensure that this hint of resilience could be developed and approached and how we could better help the nations that are part of the Alliance,” Geoana added.
He reminded in context that the leaders of NATO countries will reunite on June 14 in a summit in Brussels, where the Secretary General of the North-Atlantic Alliance will speak about its new future.
“I believe that NATO and the European Union represent a unitary platform in order to ensure that we are approaching resilience in a very integrated way. (…) It is very important for us to work together,” the NATO official added, who believes that NATO and the EU need to adapt to the new realities.