Fresh News

Monday, 09 October

Joint press conference by Prime Minister of Romania, Mihai Tudose together with the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

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Mihai Tudose: Good afternoon. Before I give the floor to the Secretary General, I would like to thank him for his visit to Romania, for having elected Bucharest the venue for the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. We consider it as a statement by the Alliance about what Romania means to NATO and what NATO means to us. We have had a very good discussion regarding the presence of Romania in the NATO structures, regarding the presence of Romania in the theaters of operations, the development of Romanian capabilities in the defence industry, cooperation between Romania and NATO on multiple levels, including Romania's role in ensuring the European unity and security with support from and under the umbrella of NATO. Mr. Secretary General, you have the floor!

Jens Stoltenberg: Thank you so much Prime Minister Mihai Tudose and it’s really a great pleasure to meet you for the first time. And since this is our first meeting let me also congratulate you on your appointment as Prime Minister this summer. I’m looking forward to working with you and to cooperate with you in the NATO Alliance. And I would also very much like to express my gratitude to Romania for its steadfast contributions to NATO in so many ways over so many years. You contribute to our collective security here in Europe and you also help NATO projecting stability through our neighbourhood both in the East and the South, helping Ukraine, helping Georgia, but also fighting terrorism to the South of the Alliance with your presence in Afghanistan, in Iraq, but also helping to make sure that the Western Balkans remain stable with your contribution to the NATO force in Kosovo. Then Romania is important for NATO because you are a host nation for our multinational brigade here in Romania. We are stepping up the NATO presence in Romania with both the multinational brigade but also with more air policing. Italian and Canadian pilots are flying together with pilots from Romania and Bulgaria in the Black Sea region. And we have increased maritime presence in the Black Sea with more port calls and more naval exercises. So this is an example of how NATO is adapting to a more challenging security environment. Romania is also important because you are hosting our missile defence site in Deveselu which is important for NATO defence and we are now implementing and following up on the plans for strengthening the NATO Defence Capabilities by building a similar site in Poland so the missile defence system is a high priority for NATO. We are also grateful for what Romania does when it comes to cyber defence, your experts, your knowledge are important for the whole Alliance. But also because Romania is leading our Cyber Defence Trust Fund for Ukraine helping them to strengthen their cyber defences. And then last but not least, Romania is key when it comes to defence spending. Your announcement to spend 2% of GDP on defence in 2017 this year is something we really welcome because it will strengthen the defences of Romania but it will also of course strengthen NATO and Romania is leading by example because I can now refer to Romania being a new country in the Alliance which is meeting the target of spending 2% of GDP on defence. So you’re leading by example and we thank you so much for that. So Mr Prime Minister, once again thank you for receiving me and thank you for Romania’s strong contributions to the Alliance.

Mihai Tudose: Secretary General, I would take the opportunity of this security-related discussion, announcing for the first time that we will sign an important contract tomorrow with an American company that will manufacture arms in Romania in collaboration with a Romanian company. Also as a long-term commitment of Romania's presence in NATO and for what our country means, and we hope it  will further mean in this area of Europe, on the eastern flank and in the Western Balkans: a pillar of stability and an acknowledged strategic partner – and we thank you for that - of the North Atlantic Alliance. Once again, I thank you for all you said earlier and for your support, including the presence of more and more Romanians in the Alliance's command structures.

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