Message from the Prime – Minister of Romania
H.E., Mr. ADRIAN NASTASE, for the opening of the international conference
„UNITED EUROPE: PROMOTING the EU ENLARGEMENT PROCESS IN ROMANIA
AND BULGARIA – the Europa Page”
Bucharest, 30 June 2003 -
I wish to congratulate the Ithaka Foundation for the initiative to
organise this conference. This venue offers us another opportunity to
speak about Romania’s path towards its actual path into the European
Union. Moreover it gives us the chance to seek alternatives to talk
about Europe to our citizens.
And because today is also the last day of the official mandate of the
Hellenic Presidency of the European Council, let me first congratulate
Greece for the important results and succeses during these past six
months. For us, this Presidency will have a special relevance - The
European Council of Thessaloniki represents - for the first time in
a European official document - the support the European Union gives
Romania to close negotiations in 2004. This new timely objective confirms
the ultimate decision of the EU to include Romania in the European Union
in 2007. Also, during this semester, we have succeded to close negotiations
over three difficult chapters, two of which cover : 1) the free circulation
of goods, and 4) the free circulation of capital, both chapters proving
Romania’ potential as a functioning market economy. All these
achievements would have not been possible without the support and the
prompt response Greece has given to the messages sent by Romania.
Secondly, I would like to refer to yet another very important achievement,
precisely the closing of the debate concerning the future of Europe,
with its outcome - the draft of the EU Convention. This forum has laid
the ground for the future intergovernmental Conference, where Romania
will participate as an observer, this allowing us to continue to contribute
to the restructuring of the policies and institutions of a EU 27.
Given this positive European political context, favourable to Romania’s
potential to integrate the EU in 2007, we are fully aware of the responsibility
we all have to apply those measures necessary for the EU enlargement.
As some of you might already know, this year we are working very hard
to adjust some of the main objectives, that made for our weakest spots
in the EU Commission’s White Paper 2002: the reform of the judicial
system and the fight agaist corruption, the administrative reform, as
well as the application of those measures needed to recognise the status
of a functioning market economy.
I wish to underlign one thing: part of these measures were already undertaken
and our objectives do not represent sheer declarations or projects left
behind on a piece of paper. As we have already proven during the past
two years, the responsibilities assumed by the Romanian Government in
the dialogue with the EU institutions were fulfiled in most cases. Thus,
I would only mention a few exemples: the anti-corruption legislation,
the strategy to reform our administration and the current restructuring
of the Romanian Government, the strengthening of the independent judiciary
system, including the executive’s interference in the development
of the judiciary act. As far as our economy is concerned, we give priority
to the on-going privatisation, debt reduction and equally to the strengthening
of the legal framework.
All these measures, tailored to ensure Romania’s path towards
fulfiling its rights and responsibilities of a member of the European
Union, will assist us reach our objective to integrate into United Europe
in 2007 .
It is obvious that our citizens must understand the reasons why they
pay such high social costs, what will be the advantages and the disadvantages
of becoming a member of the European Union.
This is why I believe in the need for a stronger partnership of the
government with the representatives of the civil society and its opinion
leaders. We need you journalists, but also you, representatives of the
civil society specialised in European Union affairs, to bring more of
Europe back home, to talk more about the European Union, about the rights
and the responsibilities of a European citizen, and why not? about how
our life will be, once being in the European house.
I will now end this brief overview of our objectives, by wishing you
succes and by ensuring you that I will be happy to find out the solutions
that you will find in bringing the European house „one step closer”