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Estonia Supports Romania’s Accession to Schengen Visa Space

31.05.2013

No 188-E

During their meeting in Tallinn today, Romanian Foreign Minister Titus Corlăţean and Foreign Minister Urmas Paet discussed opportunities to advance bilateral economic and defence co-operation. Paet stated that Estonia also supports Romania’s accession to the Schengen visa space.

Paet said that Estonia is of the opinion that the process to join the Schengen zone must be based on transparent rules, and fulfilling these rules is a requirement for joining. “Both Romania and Bulgaria fulfil the requirements for joining the Schengen area, and they have both put forth a tremendous effort,” he added.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet spoke to Romanian Foreign Minister Titus Corlăţean about cyber security matters. “Cyber security is a concrete part of the European Union’s Common Security and Defence Policy, which is why developing cyber security capabilities is essential, as is co-operation with NATO. We invite Romania to join the NATO Cyber Defence Centre,” Foreign Minister Paet added.

Foreign Minister Paet stated that there is potential in Estonia and Romania’s relations for closer co-operation in the areas of information technology, the economy, and defence. “Estonia and Romania have similar views on a lot of issues, and this creates a good basis for developing co-operation. Intensifying economic and trade relations is in the interests of both countries, and this process will be helped along by the Romanian-Estonia Chamber of Commerce that was opened in Bucharest last September,” Paet stated. There are plans to organise consultations between the foreign ministries of Estonia and Romania on European Union issues and politics in Tallinn in the near future.

On the topic of defence co-operation, Paet noted that Romania has been an active supporter of the Baltic Defence College. “Hopefully our co-operation in this area will also continue in the future,” Paet noted.

Honorary consuls also help to promote bilateral relations. “As of the fall of last year, Estonia has two honorary consuls in Romania,” Paet noted.

When talking about the further enlargement of the European Union, Foreign Minister Paet noted that Croatia’s impending accession to the EU is proof of the union’s vitality. “It should also give new energy to others, especially countries in the Western Balkans, for continuing their integration with the European Union,” Paet added. The ministers recognised the agreement that Serbia and Kosovo reached regarding North Kosovo, which is an essential step in ensuring the region’s security. “Accession negotiations with Serbia should begin in June, as should negotiations with Kosovo to conclude a Stabilisation and Association Agreement,” Paet added.

Paet and Corlăţean also discussed co-operation in international organisations, including the UN Human Rights Council. Estonia is a member of the Human Rights Council from 2013-2015 and Romania from 2011-2014.

Photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/estonian-foreign-ministry/sets/721576338296...

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