Minister of State for Europe Michael Roth visited Germany’s EU partner Romania on 4 February. He held talks with Romanian President Klaus W. Iohannis, Prime Minister Dacian Cioloş, Foreign Minister Lazăr Comănescu, and his own counterpart George Ciamba. He also participated in a discussion event in Bucharest to celebrate the founding of the German–Romanian Forum.
The Minister of State’s talks during this trip – as during many of his travels in recent months – all focused on Europe’s handling of the refugee crisis. He encouraged everyone he spoke with not to slacken in their efforts to achieve solutions based on solidarity.
The upcoming months will be crucial in determining our common future. Should we not succeed in speaking with one voice, i.e., in treating migration and integration as a pan-European task, then the entire European project could falter.
Other topics of discussion were the proposals of European Council President Donald Tusk on EU reform, as well as the progress report of the European Commission on judicial reform in Romania. In its report, the Commission confirms that Romania has made good progress on strengthening the rule of law and in fighting corruption. It also states, however, that these promising developments must be consolidated.
Establishment of the German–Romanian Forum
Vibrant bilateral relations between Germany and Romania were on display at the founding event of the German–Romanian Forum. It was held at the residence of the German Ambassador, Werner Hans Lauk, and was presided over by former Romanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Andrei Pleşu.
Numerous guests engaged in lively discussions with the German Minister of State, who in his speech highlighted how the two countries’ close ties are promoted and strengthened by the strongly-engaged German minority in Romania, as well as by the more than 400,000 Romanian citizens who live in Germany and contribute much to its social fabric, political life and economy.