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Friday, 02 Nov

Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă attended the Quadrilateral Summit in Varna

Statements by Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă at the Quadrilateral Summit of Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia and Greece


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Viorica Dancila: I am glad to be today in Varna for a new meeting in this format, which proves our determination to act together to promote interconnection and the European evolution of the region. Allow me to thank first of all the host of this meeting, my friend Boyko for the excellent organization of this meeting and the hospitality shown.

Today’s meeting was a good opportunity to continue our dialogue on regional cooperation starting from the shared interests of ensuring stability, prosperity and security, objectives even more important in the current geopolitical context.

I reaffirmed Romania’s commitment to build a cohesive and better integrated region, which would include the Balkan states as premise for the sustainable development in the region. From this perspective, I presented my interlocutors Romania’s position, expressed within the high –level conference held in Bucharest, on the EU Cohesion Policy. I outlined that for Romania, the Cohesion Policy is and should remain the main investment policy at the EU level, this contributing significantly to promoting the balanced development of Member States and regions.

During talks, we approached aspects related to collaboration, boosting cooperation within the EU Strategy for the Danube Region. I reminded that next week, we will organize in Bucharest the National Forum SUERD, in the context of Romania’s taking over the SUERD presidency from Bulgaria. During our mandate, we intend to promote the added value of this European startegy to ensure the economic development of the social cohesion and to diminish gaps in the regional and territorial development at the EU level. We want Danube to become an important transport corridor between Western and Eastern Europe. This is why it is very important for us to create the framework conducive to ensuring the navigability on Danube, throughout the year, creating the necessary conditions to this end on the sectors we jointly manage with the Bulgarian side.

We had the opportunity to reevaluate the stage of common projects in the field of transport infrastructure and energy infrastructure as previous speakers specified. I underlined the need to do more for Europe’s energy security, especially by diversifying the supply sources and accelerating the interconnections.

During the talks, I remarked on the convergence of Romania and Bulgaria’s stands on topics of European interest, as well as the will to cooperate at bilateral level. I underline on this occasion too the very good level of relations between Romania and the Republic of Bulgaria, characterized by consistency and dynamism.

In the field of transport, I reaffirmed Romania’s interest in creating a working group, highlighted by Alexis Tsipras too, which will analyze the feasibility studies regarding both highways and the construction of new bridges across Danube, such as the case of Romania and Bulgaria.

President Vučić told us the challenges he is facing in the European path of Serbia, which we all want to be successful as soon as possible. We are confident that negotiations can advance at a faster pace, on the basis of merits, of meeting all the commitments and criteria set out in the Treaty of the European Union. Moreover, we are conveying our congratulations for the opening of two new accesion chapters at the end of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. I refer to chapter 13, fisheries, and chapter 33, financial and budgetary provisions.

The excellent bilateral relations that we have with Serbia - we are soon to celebrate the 140th anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2019 - is best reflected in the trade exchanges level, which have constantly increased over the past years. We are confident that the upward trend will maintain, considering the potential offered by both our economies.

The project regarding the Timisoara - Pancevo speedway enjoys the political backing of both countries involved and we are confident that will materialize it in the near future. In technical terms, we have already established the calendar for the re-approval of the feasibility study.

We are looking with optimism towards the year 2021, when Timisoara and Novi Sad will be European Capitals of Culture, which will offer us the occasion to promote some joint projects, to strengthen contacts between people, boost cultural cooperation and the number of tourists.

Greece is a key partner for Romania in the region. We want to further foster our dialogue and cooperation at a bilateral, regional and European level. Thus, today's talks with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras highlighted once again that we have convergent views on major topics of the European agenda, as well as in terms of regional challenges. From the perspective of bilateral economic relations, we voiced our interest in strengthening the upward trend in trade, and we emphasized that the amplification and diversification of sectoral cooperation remain key issues of the bilateral agenda, having as catalysts the economic cooperation actions and the investment projects. We conveyed our Greek counterpart our appreciation for the constant support granted by the Greek authorities to the Romanian community in Greece, that counts over 55,000 members, the Romanian associative environment in Greece being extremely dynamic.

I would like to congratulate Prime Minister Borissov on the idea of ​​inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the talks occasioned by the quadrilateral meeting. This gave me the opportunity to have a second meeting this year, a meeting based on constructive discussions that would bring the two countries closer together. There are important themes that we can discuss with the Israeli Prime Minister, such as energy cooperation, the fight against terrorism, cybercrime, and Israel's support for regional connectivity projects.

As regards Romania's cooperation with Israel, we are keen to make the most of the existing economic potential and we want to attract as many Israeli investors as possible to Romania in the future. A good example of cooperation with the State of Israel, which will help capitalize on this potential, is the advanced negotiations on a new technology partnership designed to stimulate the mutual interest of the business community in the two countries.

One of the subjects discussed was also the current debate on the future of the European Union, a process that will be a central theme during the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Thus, today's meeting has provided a good opportunity to reconfirm our shared support for strengthening the Union, the relations and the strategic partnership between Romania and Israel, in a way that strengthens unity, solidarity and cohesion at European level.

Finally, I would like to thank once again the Bulgarian Prime Minister, the Greek Prime Minister and the Serbian President for a new successful meeting in this format of cooperation. Last but not least, all my thanks go to the Prime Minister of Israel, Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu, for the constructive discussions we have had and for the path that I hope we opened with this new meeting here in Varna.


Thank you!

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