The French Ambassador in Bucharest, Laurence Auer, decorated on Friday the Minister of Education Sorin Cimpeanu with the order 'Palmes academiques in the rank of Commander', with the minister stating that he will support the use of French in the institutions EU.
"I will support the use of French in the European institutions. I have already had the chance to be elected by the Secretary General of the OIF [International Organization of the Francophonie], Louise Mushikiwabo, to be part of his team that will represent Central and Eastern Europe to support the use of the French language in the European institutions in preparation for the French presidency in Brussels. I am very proud of that, "the Romanian minister said at the ceremony.
The French ambassador stressed that the medal she offered to Minister Cimpeanu is "probably one of the most beautiful French decorations".
The French diplomat referred to Cimpeanu's role as president of the 2017 Francophone University Agency (AUF).
"You have argued that both the professional training of students and the digitization of educational tools or the social role of universities should be the major objectives of university Francophonie around the world (...) Also under your leadership, the first meetings of scientific Francophonie will take place in Bucharest, in parallel with the General Assembly in September 2021", she said.
At the same time, she mentioned that giving a decoration for an incumbent minister is an exceptional case and called Cimpeanu "a great friend of France".
In his turn, the minister of education spoke about the importance of French culture. "I feel obliged, from this moment on, all the more to support the Franco-Romanian partnership and the universal values of the Francophonie," he said.
Sorin Cimpeanu recalled that he was elected president of the AUF in May 2017, when President Emmanuel Macron began his first term.
He said he was "touched" by the French proposal for a second term as president of the AUF.
"I don't know if I can meet all the requirements, but I have time until September", Sorin Cimpeanu also stated.