AGERPRES special correspondent Madalina Cerban reports: President Klaus Iohannis, who attended the European Council meeting in Brussels on Thursday and Friday, highlighted the importance of the Cohesion Policy and the Common Agricultural Policy in relation to the new multiannual budget of the EU.
"In the debate on the future multiannual budget of the Union, the President of Romania expressed his thanks for the efforts made by the Austrian Presidency in this file, stressing that, as a state that will take over the presidency of the Council of the EU as of 1 January 2019, our country will act as honest broker and will continue the same sustained pace of talks aimed at making progress in negotiations," the Presidential Administration informs on Friday.
President Iohannis welcomed the setting as time frame of the autumn of 2019 for an agreement at the level of the European Council, saying that this commitment will generate an ambitious pace of negotiations, throughout the exercise of Romania's presidency, included.
"In light of the priority objectives for our country, as a member state, in relation to the new budget, the president of Romania pointed out the importance of the Cohesion Policy and Common Agricultural Policy, objectives also supported by other member states. At the same time, Klaus Iohannis stressed the importance of a realistic approach in future discussions, namely the need to equally accommodate the new priorities and challenges of the Union through this new budget," the Presidential Administration specifies.
The head of the Romanian state mentioned that our country will promote, as the Presidency of the Council of the EU, the steps aimed at contributing to the deepening of the Single Market of the Union, the implementation of the EU Strategy for the Single Market and the adoption of as many related legislative acts.
On the other hand, Klaus Iohannis stressed the importance of continuing the efforts of the EU Member States with regard to the external dimension of migration and an active involvement in the dialogue with the external partners, the migrants' countries of origin and transit. At the same time, he referred to the fact that the Presidency of Romania of the EU Council will take over the files regarding the management of the internal dimension of migration, and will continue to work towards identifying solutions.
As far as the Union's external relations are concerned, European leaders discussed with the prospect of the EU - the League of Arab States Summit, to be held on 24 and 25 February 2019.
At the same time, the members of the European Council have approached recent developments in the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait, given Russia's use of military force against Ukraine, with "deep concern over the tensions in the region" being voiced.
"Romania's President reaffirmed the commitment and support of our country to Ukraine's territorial sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders," the Presidential Administration says.
According to the cited source, the topic of climate change was also addressed in the context of the recent presentation by the European Commission of the proposed strategy in this area entitled "A Clean Planet for All". Debates on this important topic will continue during the Romanian Presidency of the EU Council.
With regard to security and defense aspects, the European Council welcomed progress in this area, as concerns the implementation of PESCO, the strengthening of military mobility and negotiations on the European Defence Fund, included, and endorsed the Civilian Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). President Iohannis welcomed the adoption of the civilian CSDP compact, highlighting the added value of the EU in the field of civilian crisis management, the Presidential Administration further shows.
The European leaders also exchanged views on the outcome of the dialogues and consultations with citizens in the Member States, based on the report drawn up by the Austrian Presidency in cooperation with Romania as the future rotating presidency of the EU Council.
"Romania's President welcomed the results of the citizens' consultations on the future of the Union, noting that our country has supported this initiative from the outset, very useful for shaping the expectations of the European citizens in the context of the reflection process on the future of the EU and in view of the informal Sibiu Summit in May 2019," the Presidential Administration mentions.
With regard to disinformation, the European Council stressed the importance of a strong and coordinated response from the Member States to counteract this phenomenon in order to strengthen the Union's resilience and preparedness in the run-up to the elections to the European Parliament. Klaus Iohannis appreciated the recent Action Plan of the European Commission and expressed support for the measures to combat disinformation.
At the Euro Summit in an enlarged format, European leaders continued discussions on deepening the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Iohannis welcomed the efforts to strengthen EMU and reaffirmed our country's support for this goal.
As far as Brexit is concerned, European leaders have agreed that the UK and EU withdrawal agreement cannot be reopened.
President Iohannis fully supported the EU 27 approach and pointed out that Romania, as future Presidency of the EU Council, aims at kicking off as soon as possible discussions on the future relations between the EU and the UK.