Today, May 22, 2019, Minister for European Affairs George Ciamba had a dialogue with the North Macedonian Minister for Foreign Affairs Nikola Dimitrov, on his first official visit to Romania.
At the start of the meeting, the Romanian official pointed out that the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU prioritised the Western Balkans and the continuation of the enlargement policy, considering its proven viability, its beneficial social and economic effects across the candidate countries, as well as its overall contribution to the development of the EU.
In that context, George Ciamba emphasised that the EUís recent focus on the enlargement policy had brought about remarkable benefits for the region and warmly welcomed the successful conclusion and implementation of the Prespa Agreement, an emblematic event for the current international context in South-Eastern Europe. Minister George Ciamba expressed his conviction that the Prespa Agreement created positive auspices for North Macedoniaís road to Europe and highlighted that such a historic and European reconciliation represented a success story of exemplary value for the region.
Minister George Ciamba also reiterated that the Romanian side supported the implementation of the reform agenda aimed at furthering the democratic transformation of the society. He reassured the North Macedonian dignitary that Romania would continue to assist the countryís accession to the European Union and that it would support a positive decision regarding the opening of accession negotiations with the Republic of North Macedonia, in line with the provisions adopted by the General Affairs Council and the European Council of June 2018. The topic will be included on the agenda of the General Affairs Council to be held next month, which will be chaired by Minister George Ciamba.
Both dignitaries expressed their conviction that furthering the European dimension of the bilateral dialogue would lend the Republic of North Macedonia, a candidate country since 2005, a more sustained pace on its way towards the European Union.
The two ministers also participated in the public debate on the Political transition in North Macedonia and its NATO and EU membership, hosted by the National University of Political Studies and Public Administration.
George Ciamba pointed out in his speech that the success of North Macedoniaís European and Euro-Atlantic endeavours owed to the perseverance and firm political will of the North Macedonian Government, which expressed a clear and unyielding choice in favour of the community of democratic values safeguarded in the EU and NATO.
He voiced his belief that the Prespa Agreement would be a true game-changer for the entire region, standing as proof of the transformative force and the modernising dynamics of the enlargement policy, a process that contributed to stability and prosperity in the European Union and in its neighbourhood countries. He also pointed out that it was high time to reaffirm the relevance of the enlargement policy for strengthening the European project and the role of the European Union on the global arena.
George Ciamba also pointed out that the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU strove to crystallise the European support for safeguarding the pace of the reforms achieved by the candidate and potential candidate countries, including with the aim of enhancing resilience in the Western Balkans by building robust and transparent democratic institutions.