The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bogdan Aurescu, has attended, on Monday, the 6th edition of the Regional Forum (Foreign Ministers’ meeting) of the Union for the Mediterranean, which took place in Barcelona, upon the invitation of High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borell, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Ayman Safadi, and the Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, Jose Manuel Albares Bueno.
The Regional Forum was an occasion to reaffirm the common commitment of the member-states of the Union for the Mediterranean – EU member-states and the Union’s southern partners – towards the values and principles of the organization, in order to respond through dialogue and common solutions to the challenges and developments in the Euro-Mediterranean region, shows a release of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE) sent to AGERPRES.
The Romanian minister emphasized, in this context, the powerful relevance gained by the Union for the Mediterranean and the high degree of confidence it enjoys, becoming a solid instrument to advance concrete projects in the region.
The head of Romanian diplomacy expressed support for the New Agenda for the Mediterranean, adopted by the EU Council in April of this year, which outlines the important directions of action in order to respond to challenges generated by conflicts, economic, social, and demographic disparities, migration, organized crime and violent extremist narratives.
In his intervention, Minister Aurescu referred, also, to the strategic relevance of the European Vicinity and emphasized the necessity to develop synergies on the two vectors of the Vicinity Policy – the Eastern dimension and the Southern one – as well as using the lessons learnt in cooperation in the realm of democracy, human rights and rule of law.
Aurescu also emphasized the necessity for closer cooperation between member-states of the Union for the Mediterranean in the process of green transition and in adapting, as well as increasing regional resilience to the impact of climate change.
Furthermore, the head of Romanian diplomacy expressed support for the close relationship between the two banks of the Mediterranean in what regards digital transition. He showed that the development of a dynamic and resilient digital economy requires a complex approach – in the realm of communication infrastructure security, extending digitization at the government level, at the level of local institutions, as well as in the private domain, and in what regards the human resource policies in relation to innovation stimulation.
Having in view the particularly difficult current context, including from the perspective of the COVID-19 pandemic and the humanitarian crises, the Romanian minister referred to the necessity to strengthen cooperation and for regional common action and for the promotion of solidarity, as key principles in the construction of efficient prevention and response mechanisms. In this sense, the Romanian minister pointed out that the stability, prosperity and resilience of the common Euro-Mediterranean region are strongly interconnected.
Furthermore, the head of Romanian diplomacy insisted on the necessity for the joint reconstruction of the link between the security and development dimensions in the region. He emphasized, in that context, the importance of an active dialogue with the civil society, so that cooperation strengthened on the basis of the new Agenda for the Mediterranean will produce tangible results to the benefit of citizens in the region.
The Union for the Mediterranean (42 participating states, of which 27 EU member-states and 15 states riparian to the Mediterannean Sea, European or non-European) is an inter-governmental format which offers the regional framework in view of a complete dialogue, political and practical on the Euro-Mediterranean issues (political dialogue, jobs, durable development, digital economy and connectivity, energy and environment, youth, emancipation of women and youths, urban development, watersource management, commerce) with direct impact on the citizens in the region.
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the member-states of the Union for the Mediterranean meets once a year in the Regional Forum to define the priorities and domains of strategic cooperation.
The 6th Regional Forum of the Union for the Mediterranean (RF UfM) is organized by the co-chairs of the Union for the Mediterranean (EEAS/COM and Jordan), together with Spain and the General Secretariat of the Union, Barcelona being the traditional host and headquarters of the Union’s Secretariat General.