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Thursday, 22 Nov

The joint meeting of Romania and Republic of Moldova Governments (Bucharest, November 22, 2018)

Joint press statements by Prime Minister of Romania Viorica Dăncilă and Prime Minister of the Republic of Moldova Pavel Filip

 

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Viorica Dancila: We are hosting today the fourth meeting of Romania and the Republic of Moldova Governments. We are glad that this meeting takes place in Centennial Year, in close proximity to the National Day of Romania.

I discussed with Mr. Prime Minister, with the members of the Government of the Republic of Moldova the latest developments in the bilateral, economic and trade relations between Romania and the Republic of Moldova. That provided us the opportunity to see how to boost relations between Romania and the Republic of Moldova, have a sectoral approach to co-operation between the two countries, talk about concrete projects that we are implementing and a roadmap with responsible people, and at the same time to see how to stimulate our projects already in progress.

As you could notice, several bilateral agreements and documents in various areas of activity have been signed, which shows that we have taken important steps as of today, and what we have begun today, we must continue at a future stage.

I discussed with Mr. Prime Minister about boosting investments too, and the fact that we have an example, and I mean the Vest Mold Transgaz, makes us believe that we can have other objectives, that we can have other investment that will tighten the relationships between the two countries.

Last but not least, our talks focused on taking over the presidency of the Council of the EU by Romania starting January 1, 2019.

We talked about the reforms that the Republic of Moldova should make, about the Republic of Moldova's European Union membership, and Romania is willing to provide expertise and to provide experts for these reforms and to support the Republic of Moldova on a pro-European road. We believe the pro-European road is the only solution for the Republic of Moldova and the prosperity of the citizens of the Republic of Moldova.

Another discussion refers to co-operation among relevant Ministers. We believe that a much closer cooperation through the participation of Romanian Ministers at events or discussions in Chisinau would very much boost and bring even closer our countries.

I would like to thank once again Mr. Prime Minister for his presence today, in Bucharest, for the talks, the constructive dialogue I have had and I wish him greater success both in fulfilling reforms for the benefit of the Republic of Moldova and of the reforms for the European path of the Republic of Moldova. Mr. Prime Minister, you have the floor.

Pavel Filip: Distinguished Prime Minister, dear journalists, it is an honour for me and my colleagues- the entire governmental team, to greet you today here, in Bucharest, on the joint meeting of the two Governments: Romania and the Republic of Moldova Governments. We had as before friendly talks with colleagues, but at the same time, we also had punctual talks, pragmatic ones, on projects binding us, on projects which have been carried out, and at the same time, we made a plan for the future. We managed to review the beautiful results we achieved.

It would be little to say that our countries enjoy good or excellent relations from the diplomatic standpoint, because our relations are much more deeper than friendly ones, we share the same language, culture, a common space of values. Therefore, I reiterated once again that the accession to the European Union remains our only plan and our efforts will intensify including in the context of Romanian presidency of the Council of the EU.  Romania is the main commercial partner of the Republic of Moldova, the foreign trade volume grew by 30 percent only this year, compared to last year, and it already exceeded the figure of 1 billion USD dollars.

Therefore, as you could see, not only history, culture, language, the values and our people but also these pragmatic relations as also the economic relations are binding us. I know that here, in Bucharest, you share our views in Chisinau. I felt this many times, I will repeat with each occasion that I will never forget the helping hand that Romania gave us, three years ago, when I came at the helm of Chisinau Cabinet and the Republic of Moldova went through an economic, political and also financial crisis.

Romania was the country that first helped us - and I am talking here about the 150 million loan offered at that time, but also about the humanitarian aid that was granted then by Romania, whether we are talking about food or fuel for low-income families. I often use the proverb "a friend in need is a friend indeed" to illustrate this situation, if you want, between us and Romania and I appreciate that regardless of the domestic situation here or the internal situation in Chisinau, politicians from Bucharest , as well as from Chisinau, have always managed to find a common denominator in terms of our bilateral relationship.

In Chisinau, on the other hand, it has become really trendy to shout out and to declare yourself for unification. Already many parties have taken up this desideratum. We believe that the approaches must be pragmatic as then they will bring more. Strong statements are not the ones to secure this closeness, but also the very concrete projects, whether they are social projects or even more I want to outline the infrastructure interconnection projects. Today, I had the opportunity to come up with this approach, as we want an integrate infrastructure, a common one, we want this rapprochement, this union  to be made by interconnecting infrastructure in different areas, to integrate our transport systems, electronic communications systems, environmental systems, integrate our security , educational, cultural systems. You will see that we have progress on each of the aforementioned, and I am glad that we agreed to continue this path.

We want to have a common communication space, we want our citizens to no longer feel like they are crossing from one country to another and to be able to talk over the phone without paying for roaming tariffs. I am glad that I agreed as a first symbolic step that our citizens won't pay roaming on December 1, which is the Greater Union Day. The Republic of Moldova is ready with all the necessary procedures and we will go ahead with signing this agreement to eliminate the roaming tariffs and I want to thank once again Mrs Prime Minister for her openness and for having this initiative, it was her idea.

We have a beautiful project symbolically called „The Union Highway”, I am talking about the Targu Mures – Iasi – Ungheni highway, we are also moving faster with the Ungheni road bridge, and we discussed about other bridges such as the Grozesti Bridge and beyond the practical effects, there are also symbolic effects or emotional ones, as Ungheni and Grozesti were split as we have localities with the same name on the left and the right side of the Prut.

 We discussed today in view of Romanian presidency of the Council of the European Union how to promote a project that will bring railways in Moldova in line with the European gauge standards. Why not have this direct connection between Chisinau and Bucharest and maybe, in the future, we even manage to launch a high-speed train?

Madam Prime Minister mentioned already the Iasi-Ungheni gas pipeline, a project we are both proud of, it is one of the most important projects that have brought Romanian investment in the Republic of Moldova.

 These investments will also ensure energy security; Republic of Moldova will no longer depend on a single supplier or it will not depend on Russian gas. We want to proceed the same way with the interconnection of electricity and in this respect,we have already identified financing for this interconnection, and why not, we may follow this path, as we did it with natural gas interconnection.

We are speaking sometimes about the fact that we do not want borders between our countries and today, I think we discussed this, we will intervene to streamline the border traffic and at the same time, the colleagues will examine the possibility of a joint control at border checkpoints. We have large cross-border projects and here, I want to outline the SMURD project which will soon enter the second phase. Such projects that fall precisely into the category of cross-border projects include the modernisation of customs offices, the development of border communication infrastructure, co-operation on in the cross-border fight against crime. At the same time, we greatly appreciate the assistance provided in the field of military training, and also donations of equipment and investment in the modernisation of defence capabilities.

Other investment that we are proud of as we can also talk about the development of financial and banking infrastructure is that in 2018, Transylvania Bank entered the banking market of the Republic of Moldova. This offered us the possibility that that the Moldovan currency crosses the Prut. Today, in the exchange offices here in Bucharest you can change Moldovan lei too. I cannot but mention the education and culture infrastructure. School minibuses, which are a donation from the Romanian Government, carry more than 13,000 pupils to school in the Republic of Moldova at present. I also thanked for the Bessarabian students' scholarships, as well as for the renovation of the cultural edifices, such as the Chişinău Organ Hall, the Haşdeu Theater in Cahul or the Art Museum, which is a pearl in the center of Chisinau today.

Another project we are fond of is the renovation of kindergartens, a project that we want to expand, and we have agreed this today in this joint sitting. More than 900 kindergartens in the Republic of Moldova have been renovated with investments of over 26 million euros from the Romanian Government. These are beautiful projects, are projects that have a great impact on our citizens. Prime Minister, distinguished colleagues, this is how we see the union, with concrete projects of interconnection of infrastructure between our countries. It's simple. We have the same blood, now we have the opportunity to rebuild or build networks, according to the pattern of a blood system, if you want, to have an interconnected system, so that the hearts in the two capitals beat at the same pace. And I thank you, Madam Prime Minister, for openness. I have all the certainty that together we will be able to offer our citizens a common space of communication, a common transport space, a common security space, as we have a common space of history, culture, values, as it was and is also from historical view. Thank you very much!

Viorica Dăncilă: I thank you too! Thank you!

 

 

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Plenary session of the two delegations

 

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Viorica Dăncilă: Good afternoon! It is with great pleasure that we host today, in Bucharest, a new joint meeting of the Romania and the Republic of Moldova Governments. I would like to wish a warm welcome to Mr. Prime Minister Pavel Filip,  Mr. Vice Prime Minister Iurie Leanca, to all members of the Republic of Moldova Cabinet.  I consider this meeting to be a highly important one, especially that it takes place in the Centennial Year, a year in which Romania celebrates 100 years since the Greater Union. To us, it is a highly important year, we need to consider boosting bilateral, economic and commercial relations between the two countries. During the talks, we will address concrete points for boosting cooperation between the two countries and hopefully, by the end of this meeting, we will discuss about what we have achieved, what we have decided and we act in order to accelerate and put into practice as soon as possible our projects. Mr. Prime Minister, you have the floor.

Pavel Filip: Good afternoon, Mrs. Prime Minister, Ministers! I am glad to see each other again in Bucharest, on a new joint meeting of the Romania and Republic of Moldova Governments. On this occasion, I want to congratulate the new colleagues who were appointed in the Romanian Cabinet, and wish them success in this important mandate. In front of you is the Chisinau Cabinet after going through the reform of the central public administration. We are fewer in number but the Government is in my point of view equally or even much more efficient than before. It is true that our countries enjoy historical ties. I think it would be little to say that we have good or excellent relations, because the relationship between the Republic of Moldova and Romania goes beyond this axis. We share a linguistic,cultural space, a space of values, which is why the relationship I think is a special one. Thank you!

 

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Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă will preside in Bucharest, on November 22, 2018, a joint meeting of the Governments of Romania and the Republic of Moldova. Prime Minister of the Republic of Moldova Pavel Filip, and relevant Ministers from areas of shared interest will also attend the meeting.

The talks will address the current stage and prospects of the bilateral relationship, including its sectoral components, and they will assess the current stage of implementation of the bilateral cooperation projects carried out by Romania in the Republic of Moldova, and explore options for new cooperation projects.

The joint meeting of the two Governments represents an opportunity to boost the bilateral agenda, in view of the European future of the Republic of Moldova and the advancement of the bilateral cooperation projects of strategic relevance.

Moreover, the meeting takes place in the context of the preparations for Romania to take over the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU in the first semester of 2019, being an occasion to encourage the efforts of the Republic of Moldova towards advancing its European path, and implementing the reforms agreed under the Association Agreement with the EU.



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