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Thursday, 23 March

Bilateral governmental meeting Romania - Republic of Moldova

Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu: Only the European option may bring responses of prosperity and safety to the Republic of Moldova’s citizens

The Government of Romania and the Government of the Republic of Moldova held today, in Piatra Neamt, the third joint meeting in small format. During the meeting, projects under implementation have been assessed and discussions have been held about new joint initiatives in the fields of energy, infrastructure, culture, regional development, education, internal affairs .

„Romania's action will continue to have a double role: to stabilize and strengthen the democratic frameworks of the Republic of Moldova and to strategically anchor the Republic of Moldova in the European space”, Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu has stated.

Romania is considering moving into a new stage of bilateral relations, namely, reinforcing Romanian investment presence in the Republic of Moldova by participating in the privatization process while observing all the transparent procedures, the Head of the Romanian Executive has outlined.

Also, Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu has stated that the Republic of Moldova needs to speed up the processes of reform and consolidation of democratic progress. „Romania expects consistency and seriousness. Only the European option may bring responses of prosperity and safety to the citizens of the Republic of Moldova, and Romania is ready to support Chisinau authorities along this way”.

Prime Minister of the Republic of Moldova Pavel Filip has stated that bilateral relations are marked by an excellent, dynamic and diverse cooperation and has thanked the Romanian Government for its constant support. Prime Minister of the Republic of Moldova has mentioned assistance in the field of education and has underlined that the 96 microbuses donated by Romania represents a necessary investment in the context of the education reform and school optimization.

Prime Minister Filip has stated that granting the EUR 150 million loan, with two tranches already released to date has represented an important support granted by Romania to the Republic of Moldova.

Prime Minister Pavel Filip has given assurances that the Republic of Moldova stays committed to the strategic track of reforms laid down in the European Union Association Agreement.

„Moldova further looks towards the West, as country project. Irrespective of Chisinau’s presidential stands, nothing will change in our relationship with Romania, the way nothing will change in our European option”, Prime Minister Pavel Filip has underlined.

The Head of the Republic of Moldova’s Executive has stated that the bilateral discussions have also aimed at enhancing cooperation in the energy, cultural, customs fields and has added that the implementation of the energy projects established for the Republic of Moldova will be sped up. In this respect, Pavel Filip has reiterated the fact that energy security is very important and has expessed his confidence that this will be ensured with the support of Romania through interconnection to both European natural gas and electricity systems.

With respect to the Republic of Moldova’s privatization programme, Prime Minister Pavel Filip has stated that new projects and investments from Romania are welcome.

Also, Prime Minister Pavel Filip has added that he agreed with Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu on the continuation of joint Government meetings and has expressed readiness for the next meeting to be hosted by Chisinau.

Following the bilateral meeting, the two Prime Ministers and the official delegations visited together Agapia Monastery.

 

Joint press conference by Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu and Prime Minister Pavel Filip following the bilateral governmental meeting Romania –Republic of Moldova

 

Sorin Grindeanu: Mr. Prime Minister, we convey you once again: welcome, together with your team! Today, we had an extremely pragmatic meeting and the approach was also pragmatic, we had a constructive dialogue, as every time, which forms the basis of the cooperation between Romania and the Republic of Moldova. We have managed today to review very many projects underway at this moment. We discussed about future projects, about projects in the field of energy, infrastructure, culture, environment, regional development. There are topical things as I told you, which develops the relationship between Romania and the Republic of Moldova. Romania’s action will continue to play a double role: to stabilize the Republic of Moldova and to strengthen the Republic of Moldova’s institutional and democratic framewoks and secondly, to act as strategical and physical anchor of the Republic of Moldova in the European space. Our topical discussions today followed those lines, but they were guided by these two important principles. Over the next period, we intend to increase our presence in the Republic of Moldova or to move into a new stage. We wish to reinforce Romanian investment presence in the Republic of Moldova, to be part of possible privatization processes taking place in the next period in Moldova, while observing all the transparent procedures you might have.

We believe it’s time for concrete actions. The processes of reform must be accelerated and the Republic of Moldova’s European path must be further consolidated.

Romania expects consistency and seriousness on the part of the Republic of Moldova. I reiterate in the end that only the European option can give durable answers to the Republic of Moldova’s citizens’ expectations of prosperity, safety, and stability. We are ready to continue supporting the Republic of Moldova on this track. Thank you, Mr. Prime Minister!

Pavel Filip: Distinguished Prime Minister, Chairperson of the County Council, Ministers, journalists, media institutions representatives, I want to thank first of all Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu for the invitation to pay visit to Piatra Neamt, a special occasion in my view, to discuss once more the bilateral agenda of Romania and the Republic of Moldova. We managed to review all ongoing projects and we also spoke about future projects. I also want to sincerely thank the Neamt County Council for the hospitality showed to our delegation. Our discussions revealed that the relations between our countries are marked by excellent cooperation in all fields, the bilateral political dialogue is dynamic and diverse, in the spirit of the strategic partnership for the European integration of the Republic of Moldova. In this respect, I assured Prime Minister that Moldova remains firmly committed to achieving our strategic project: consistent implementation of reforms stipulated by the Association Agreement with the European Union. Moldova looks to the West as country project further on. The truth is that, irrespective of Chisinau presidential stands, Constitution gives more decision –power to Parliament and Government and from this point of view, nothing will change in our relation with Romania, and nothing will change in our European option which is in fact our country project. We exchanged opinions on the developments in the security field at regional level, as well as the implications regarding Moldova’s stability. At the same time, I expressed sincere thanks for the constant support granted in our European track, Romanian valuable experience provided has essentially contributed in moments of maximum importance for the Republic of Moldova. Very important for us, and I appreciated and we brings thanks once more regarding the 150 million euro loan, the first two tranches that the Republic of Moldova received, I cannot say that this loan has come in the most difficult moments for Republic of Moldova. We appreciate it. I want to give thanks especially for the most recent decision of the Romanian Government: 96 school buses that will arrive soon in the Republic of Moldova. We spoke about the technical details too, today. It is a necessary investment for us, in the context of the educational reform and school optimization in the Republic of Moldova. Our relation gets best strengthened through topical projects and today, we spoke about increasing this cooperation in the energy field, the cultural field, as well as in other key areas, either the customs or the infrastructure one. It was not necessary to innovate on this meeting. We have projects started and not yet completed. It is important now to focus on good governance in the interest of both countries’ citizens. We will speed up the implementation of the energy projects already established, which are very important for the Republic of Moldova, Republic of Moldova being an energy importer. This is why, energy security is a very important objective for the Government I have the honor to represent, and I am sure that we shall suceed this through the interconnection to European system of natural gas and electricity.

At the same time, we want to launch new projects, as Prime Minister Grindeanu has already spoken with respect to investments from Romania in the Republic of Moldova. It is true, we will be glad to present the entire privatisation program from the Republic of Moldova and these investments are surely welcome.

I agreed with Prime Minister Grindeanu that in the coming months, we continue this already established tradition, these joint Executive meetings already in the full format of Governments, and we expressed our availability to host the next joint meeting of the Governments of Romania and the Republic of Moldova, in Chisinau.

I want to tell you that this is not just the beginning of a beautiful friendship, it is more than this: it is the consolidation of a great European brotherhood, and I take this opportunity to thank you for that.

Sorin Grindeanu: Thank you. If you have questions.

Reporter: A question for both Prime Ministers, in connection with the project of Iasi –Ungheni gas pipeline, with the extension to Chisinau. Can Chisinau give today guarantees that that pipeline will be achieved until 2019, when we know that the Russian Federation will finalize that project that circumvents Republic of Moldova and Ukraine and then, can we face the threat with halts in gas deliveries? Can Chisinau ensure that this project be achieved until 2019? How will Romania monitor this process?

Sorin Grindeanu: I will answer in few words, as it was a point discussed a lot today, within our meeting. There are concrete deadlines that our Economy Ministry along with the companies under its coordination, also the representatives of the Republic of Moldova assumed.

It was a point discussed at length during our meeting today. There are concrete deadlines that our Economy Ministry and the representatives from the Republic of Moldova have also undertaken. We, Prime Minister Filip and I, are optimistic that the 2019 deadline will be brought forward.I will let Prime Minister announce you a good news heard and received during our today Government meeting, on the energy sector, and the deadlines, as I told you, we are sure they will be brought forward, before 2019. Prime Minister, please!

Pavel Filip: This was one of the important topics we have discussed today. It is true that in line with regulations, we proposed until 2019, to achieve this project. Energy security is one of the most important for the Republic of Moldova, considering that we do not produce energy, but we import this energy. We will do our best for this project to be achieved until the end of 2018. In this respect I want to tell you that things are running as we intended. In short time, we will have the project and we will start working directly. You already know that there have been signed the funding agreements both with the European Investment Bank, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and as Prime Minister Grindeanu said, during the very meeting, Minister Tudose told us a very good news as the European Commission decided to increase the grant whereby this project will be funded, from EUR 10 million to 40 million. Surely, this cannot be but rejoicing and if we rally, then, this project can be achieved until late 2018.

Reporter: A question for both Prime Ministers. On March 27, we will mark 99 years since Union. How did the relations between Romania and the Republic of Moldova evolve and I ask you that in the context in which, in Chisinau, we have a president that tend to look more towards Russia, than towards Romania?  How do you see these relations in the future? What will you do to mark these events? We will soon celebrate 100 years since Union, but a draft law was adopted by Parliament on March 27, in Romania, the law has not been promulgated yet, it will be a feast in Romania. What will you do in the Republic of Moldova, how do you see these relations in the future?

Sorin Grindeanu: Thank you. From Romania’s point of view, we promote a fair, principled and transparent reporting, in relation with the Republic of Moldova. Our main interlocutor in Chisinau is the Government of the Republic of Molova and any meeting of such type, as the one today, the next in Chisinau, strengthens relations between Romania and the Republic of Moldova. I said from the outset that it is important to focus on topical projects, realist but also tangible. Only the European option, may give lasting answers to the expectations of prosperity, safety and stability of the Republic of Moldova’s citizens. We are ready to further back Republic of Moldova on this path.

Pavel Filip: Surely, our country project is that the Republic of Moldova joins the European Union, near Romania. We have a very good relation. Today, we discussed very pragmatically as the rapprochement of our countries translates not only in statements but also topical projects. This meeting lasted more than it was supposed to last, we had what to discuss, as there are topical projects and the citizens of our countries need to understand that the relations between our countries are not just at statement level, but they are materialized through tangible projects. Republic of Moldova is a parliamentary country. Its Constitution provides more decision power to Government and Parliament. In this way, absolutely nothing will change in our relations with Romania, on the contrary, I want to say that they will become increasingly better, even if some do not like to hear this. Republic of Moldova and Romania are two twin hearts beating in the same pace and not uselessly. Each time when the Republic of Moldova was in a difficult situation, Romania gave it a helpful hand. The same happened with the refundable loan, the same happens with this nonrefundable technical and financial assistance. This is why I see no reason of concern in this respect. Indeed an interlocutor for Bucharest is the Government and Parliament in Chisinau, as it is for those of IMF and those of the European Commission or those from the World Bank and we proved this through the 2016 activity.

Reporter: If you allow me, Mr. Prime Minister, I know there is in Parliament a draft law for March 27 national feast in your country too. Taking into account that you have the majority, what will you do with this draft law?

Pavel Filip: Let the examination of this draft law to the MPs there when debates and consultations on this draft law start, then, we will see. (...) 

 



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