Romania-Italy: action plan that will strengthen the relations between the two states to a higher level

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Rome, February 15, 2024# RBJ (Source: Agerpres) – Romania and Italy are entering a new stage of development of their consolidated strategic partnership, Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu said on Thursday, adding that the joint statement that signed with Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni lays the foundations for an action plan that will strengthen relations between the two states to another level.

“13 years after the last intergovernmental meeting in this format, which took place in Bucharest, we have the opportunity to write a new important chapter in the history of our bilateral relations. The joint statement we signed today lays the foundations for an action plan that will strengthen relations between our states to another level. I appreciated President Meloni’s openness regarding the intensification of economic cooperation, but also for the valorization of the Romanian diaspora living in Italy, as well as the Italian community in our country,” Ciolacu, who was visiting, said in Rome, in the framework of the joint statements made with his Italian counterpart.

He emphasized the importance of the historical and cultural ties between the two states.

“The Romanians here have already demonstrated their contribution to the development of relations between our countries. Sometimes, we have to admit that the politicians have not risen to the level of our common potential, but we both propose, Madam President, to change this. In the spirit of these historical ties, we decided as the Prime Minister of Romania to contribute to the repairs currently being carried out to Trajan’s Column, a monument that represents a cornerstone for the Romanian people, but also for the cultural relations between the two nations. let’s protect values, respect our history and learn from it, looking forward together to what we can do to maintain peace and stability on our continent and internationally,” said the prime minister.

Marcel Ciolacu told the Romanians in Italy that the authorities in Bucharest are at their disposal.

“I want to thank all those who made the Romanians living here feel welcome and to convey to the Romanians in Italy that the Executive I lead is at their disposal. We will do everything possible so that their connections with the country to be stronger and stronger. (…) Therefore, an intensively discussed aspect, also provided for in the signed documents, provides for the intensification of cooperation for the protection of Romanian workers in Italy, the fight against crime and the mobility of the labor force in safe conditions”, completed Ciolacu.

He thanked the Italian Prime Minister and the Italian Ministry of Labor and Social Policies for unblocking the situation regarding the settlement of the pension files of the Romanians who worked in the peninsula.

At the same time, the head of the Government expressed his hope that Prime Minister Meloni will also support the steps to complete the negotiations on the agreement between the Romanian Orthodox Episcopate and the Italian Cabinet, started in 2012, regarding the status of the Romanian Orthodox clergy.

During the joint meeting of the two Governments, a main topic was related to the economic dimension.

“Italy is Romania’s second trading partner. We have signals that official statistics will show that bilateral trade will exceed 20 billion euros in 2023, a new record. At the same time, I notice with satisfaction that the Romanians here have reached the place two in a ranking of foreigners opening businesses in Italy, with tens of thousands of companies and individual enterprises. In addition, several important Romanian companies have invested in Italy in recent years: Banca Transilvania, Digi, Bitdefender or UiPath, all leaders in their fields of activity. I want this to continue to develop, and the high interest in the Italy-Romania Economic Forum that will take place this afternoon fully confirms this,” highlighted Ciolacu.

He also launched a call to Italian companies to invest in Romania.

“Come and invest in Romania, because you will only have something to gain. The Italian business environment already present in Romania contributes to the economic development of our country. (…) We want to use even more the know-how from Italy and to carry out a transfer of skills and knowledge in such a way that the economic competitiveness of both states increases and to develop as many joint initiatives as possible. (…) Currently, we have many joint projects of strategic importance. In the area of transport and construction , in terms of energy or in the field of defense, there is a significant potential that we want to exploit. Therefore, the relevant ministers intensively discussed each issue in order to identify the best solutions for strengthening our cooperation”, Marcel Ciolacu also conveyed.

The meeting of the Cabinets from Bucharest and Rome also provided the occasion for discussions on the topics of the European and international agenda.

“Romania and Italy share many of the challenges we face today. We need a world where international rules are respected, we need to protect our values, and the European Union and NATO need to help us identify the best common solutions. I am convinced that together, Romania and Italy, will continue to be influential actors in the two international structures and we will help to modernize their action in such a way that they become more effective”, explained Ciolacu.

At the same time, he expressed his appreciation for Italy’s unconditional support for Romania’s accession to the Schengen area.

The Prime Minister announced that he will ask his colleagues in the Government to closely follow the discussed action plan so that the next meeting of the two Cabinets can be held much faster, with tangible results.

“The potential exists, but Romania and Italy need to demonstrate more ambition. Madam President Meloni, dear Giorgia, I thank you for the very good dialogue today and the openness you are showing. I am convinced that we are on the right track both in terms of regarding the strengthening of our strategic partnership, as well as the sincere friendship between our nations”, concluded Ciolacu.

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