Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis announced on Wednesday having invited Estonia to join the Euro-Atlantic Resilience Centre in Bucharest.
“Romania and Estonia share common visions and interests at the EU level, which facilitates close co-operation between us on the current European agenda and the European Union’s priorities in the future. After today’s meeting, I am convinced that we will continue to support the importance of a uniform approach at the European Union, in full consistency with the principles of solidarity, cohesion, fundamental values, including in the recent debates at the conference on the future of the union. We also discussed the importance of coordination at EU level in promoting resilience both internally and globally. I emphasised that, especially in the light of the lessons learned from the experience of the recent crisis, it is essential that we take action to strengthen the European Union’s capacity to respond effectively to any potential new challenges. The Euro-Atlantic Resilience Centre in Bucharest will be very useful to that end, and I invited Estonia to join in,” the Romanian head of state told a joint news conference in Tallinn with his Estonian counterpart Kersti Kaljulaid.
He said that their talks focused on the possibilities of strengthening Romanian-Estonian co-operation in the areas of digital, cyber security and artificial intelligence, given the experience in this area of Estonia and Romania, which hosts the new European Union cyber centre.
Iohannis added that their talks also focused on the results of the recent NATO summit on June 14.
“We welcomed the decision to develop a new NATO strategic concept, as well as the decisions taken at the summit on strengthening NATO’s political and military stance, including on the Eastern Flank,” Iohannis also said.
Discussions between the two officials also focused on regional co-operation under the Three Seas Initiative.
“The Three Seas initiative can contribute to the economic recovery in the post-pandemic period by developing connectivity between the countries in the region. In fact, a main objective of Romania remains the implementation of the strategic interconnection projects Rail-2-Sea and Via Carpathia. At the same time, we voiced support for a successful incoming meeting next month in Sofia, Bulgaria,” said Iohannis, according to Agerpres.
The two presidents also addressed recent developments in the Eastern Neighbourhood.
“We discussed the situation in Moldova and voiced the support of Romania and Estonia for the resumption of the ambitious agenda of pro-European democratic reforms of Moldova. We also discussed the worrying security situation around Ukraine, as well as the growing serious challenges related to Belarus. All these issues are also relevant from the perspective of the forthcoming European Council of June 25, when we return with a more strategic discussion on the EU’s relationship with Russia. We agreed to coordinate for the best possible preparation for the forthcoming Eastern Partnership summit, which must aim for the most ambitious results both in terms of the overall vision and actual objectives pursued jointly with the Eastern partners,” said Iohannis, commending Estonia for constantly supporting Romania’s opening membership discussions with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
Estonia is a champion of digitalisation and e-government, we have a lot to learn
President Klaus Iohannis said on Wednesday that Estonia is well ahead of Romania in terms of digitalisation and e-government, a context in which he said he would encourage Romanian leaders in the field to contact Estonian counterparts for a collaboration.
“It is well known that Estonia is a champion of digitalisation and e-government. It is equally clear that our very good relations are a solid basis for collaboration in this field. I will encourage all those in the field in our country to contact their Estonian counterparts and let us try to work together on a successful concept. Estonia is well ahead of us in terms of e-government systems, digital services for all citizens, network security and so on. We have a lot to learn and I am optimistic about a very healthy collaboration in this area,” Iohannis said in a joint conference with his Estonian counterpart Kersti Kaljulaid, noting that he will visit the e-Estonia Center on Thursday.
The head of state also stressed in discussions with his Estonian counterpart the special interest in intensifying trade and sectoral exchanges.
“We also noticed that after the problems caused by the pandemic, our economic relations have been experiencing a good recovery since the beginning of this year,” he said.
The Estonian President said that her country is open to cooperating with Romania in the digital field.
“I am happy that you have decided to visit the e-Estonia Center tomorrow, because this pandemic period has shown us that we cannot live without secure digital tools. (…) We are very open to cooperate in this regard as well,” added Kersti Kaljulaid.
NATO is the strongest military alliance ever; Romania’s security is better guaranteed by the decisions taken at the recent Alliance Summit
President Klaus Iohannis also said on Wednesday that NATO is the strongest military alliance and reiterated that Romania’s security is better guaranteed by the decisions taken at the recent Alliance Summit.
“Through the decisions taken at the NATO Summit on June 14, Romania and Romanians are better protected, Romania’s security is better guaranteed. For our states, for both our nations, a strong transatlantic relationship is vital. The transatlantic relationship is not a diplomatic one. The transatlantic relationship is the very basis of our values-based democracies, and I would like to mention in this context something that President Biden said in his speech at NATO: unfortunately, nowadays, there are fewer democracies and more autocracies in the world. It is worrying and it is our task, it is our goal, to keep our democratic approach. This means for us to be strong. NATO is the strongest military alliance ever but this does not allow us to let our guard down,” Iohannis told a joint news conference with Estonian counterpart Kersti Kaljulaid.
He stressed that the allies must be stronger, more resilient, faster, better prepared.
“We must ensure that NATO remains, together with the United States, together with the European Union, where the state of the art is. We must be the guarantors of an economic, democratic, technological development that is extremely efficient, but also open to all our citizens,” Iohannis said.
In this context, the President pointed out that the allies must work on a new strategic concept.
“The old one dates back to 2010, since then the world has changed and we must change, we must adapt our strategic concept. The permanent adaptation to a rapidly changing world is vital. Without it we will not be able to perform as we all want. The fact that this summit took place and proved that we are united, that we are in solidarity is probably the best news that our nations could receive and that is why I said: in this context, Romania, but also Estonia and all allies are better positioned and better protected,” Iohannis said.
The Estonian president also spoke about NATO’s new strategic concept.
“In terms of security, NATO’s level of deterrence has been increased when needed, and sometimes moderated to create a stronger Europe. Now we are at a growth point and I think we will be in a position to a growth point for another period, because behind NATO’s eastern border there is an unpredictable neighbour. NATO is 100% successful in protecting the territorial integrity of its members, but this does not happen by itself, it comes after a hard work on the part of all members, “she said, according to Agerpres.