The Prime Minister of Romania, Marcel Ciolacu, has thanked Germany for its ongoing support regarding the accession of Bucharest to the Schengen Area.
His comments came during a meeting he had with the Federal Chancellor of Germany, Olaf Scholz, held in Spain on Saturday.
During the meeting, the two discussed the economic, social, and geopolitical challenges to which European countries are currently subject, as well as Romania’s membership in the EU’s visa-free travel zone.
Through a post on his Facebook account, Ciolacu said that Bucharest and Berlin share the same thoughts for Europe.
I spoke with Olaf Scholz about the economic, social and geopolitical challenges facing the whole of Europe, about the dynamism of our bilateral relationship and about Romania’s accession to the Schengen area. I thanked him for Germany’s constant support of our legitimate desire to be part of this space! A friend in need is a friend indeed!
The accession of Romania to the Schengen Zone was blocked in December last year by Austria, among irregular migration concerns cited by authorities in this country.
Austria’s ongoing Schengen veto on Romania has recently been considered a profound injustice by the Prime Minister of Romania, who said that he would ask to schedule an extraordinary meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) Council in December this year to discuss Bucharest’s candidacy to the borderless area of Schengen.
Besides, Ciolacu told Bloomberg that his country could consider decoupling from Bulgaria if negotiations do not lead to good results, despite the fact that such a process is very difficult technically.
It is very difficult for me to accept that Austria benefits from the European Sky Shield initiative, even though it is a neutral country, while we allocate 2.5 per cent of GDP to defence.
Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union targets a December vote in order to decide on the accession of Romania and Bulgaria to Schengen, in spite of the fact that Austrian authorities have emphasised that their position continues to remain unchanged when it comes to this issue.
Unlike Austria, authorities in Germany have reiterated their support for the membership of both these Balkan countries in the Schengen Area.
Last month, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that now is the time for the Western Balkan countries to become members of the Schengen Zone.