Foreign Affairs Minister Bogdan Aurescu underscored on Wednesday the importance of strengthening resilience in the Black Sea region, bringing to mind the context generated by the invasion of Ukraine and the impact on food and energy security.
He delivered a speech within the international event called “Euro-Atlantic Resilience Forum – Black Sea Perspectives”, namely the session called “Hybrid Threats to the Resilience of Food Supply Chains: Focus on the Black Sea Region,” which was held at the Palace of Parliament.
He stated that the demarches made in view of strengthening Europe’s resilience, at all levels, will allow an efficient action, absorbing shocks, and making efficient the necessary tools of a politics directed toward the future. He mentioned that Romania is militating for the need to support its vicinity, as well as the Eastern and South vicinity of the EU, the Western Balkans. He pointed out that the EU can be globally strong only if it has positive projections within its vicinity. The Minister also talked about the invasion of Ukraine and the immense impact on food and energy security, which proved the importance of strengthening resilience in the Black Sea region, which was the main target of Russia’s aggressive behavior. He brought to mind that this region was the area where Russia tested, for the first time, the disintegration tactics through military aggression against states such as the Republic of Moldova in 1992, Georgia in 2008, Ukraine in 2014 and subsequently, adding that it represents Moscow’s main platform for the hybrid war against the EU and NATO.
The Foreign Affairs Minister highlighted that the current situation lead to important decisions, strengthening resilience and the deterrence and defence posture on the Eastern flank and at the Black Sea. Therefore, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova are candidates for the accession to the EU, and Georgia also has the prospect of becoming a member of the EU. Moreover, Finland and Sweden, once neutral states, have decided to start the demarches in view of joining NATO.
Minister Aurescu mentioned that the Summit in Madrid has represented a decisive moment for a stronger and more coherent defence on the Eastern flank.
He stressed that the Summit’s decisions must be fully implemented as soon as possible, taking into account that the Back Sea is known as a region of strategic importance for the Alliance. He mentioned that the region’s entire profile is special and Romania has all the necessary premise to continue the support in view of strengthening the resilience and defence capabilities of Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia.
Solidarity lanes for Ukrainian grain export continue to be used
Romania’s Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu said on Wednesday that the European Union’s solidarity lanes through which goods are shipped from and to Ukraine continue to be used.
“The lanes, the so-called solidarity lanes that also include Romania and its efforts for over 6.5 million tonnes of grain transported through it, they continue to be used. (…) There is even an effort from the European institutions, from the European Commission, to provide additional funds to back up this effort that we and other countries involved in helping Ukraine have made to facilitate grain transit. We are looking forward to the Black Sea Grain Initiative for shipping grain through the Black Sea expiring. It is very important that the agreement continues to operate,” Aurescu said at the Senate House.
He added that 14.5 million tonnes of grain have been shipped through the solidarity lanes, including over 6.5 million tonnes that passed through Romania, plus 10 million tones under the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
“You can realise Romania’s proportional contribution to each of the two initiatives,” said Aurescu, according to Agerpres.