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Schengen accession, support for Moldova's European path - among Romanian diplomacy's priorities in 2023

January 5, 2023

The continuation of steps to join the Schengen Area and support for Moldova's European path are two of the priorities of Romanian diplomacy in 2023, reads the annual report of the Foreign Affairs Ministry - Highlights of Romania's Diplomatic Action.Regarding the conflict in Ukraine, Romania "will further support the creation of a mechanism for bringing to justice those responsible for the crime of aggression committed in Russia's illegal war against Ukraine."Accession to Schengen and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) are set forth in the chapter on the 2023 milestones."The Foreign Ministry will thus continue to attach priority attention, including by ensuring the necessary resources, to the continuation of intensive efforts to support Romania's accession to the Schengen Area, as well as to our country's accession to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)," the document states.As part of our country's role as a NATO member, the Foreign Ministry is determined to promote Romania's strategic priorities within the Alliance, including in the perspective of the 2023 NATO Summit in Vilnius, pleading for increased attention to strengthening NATO's deterrence and defense posture on its eastern flank in order to defend national security, and to the Black Sea area, as a region of strategic importance for Euro-Atlantic security.Approaches for Romania's integration in the Visa Waiver Program are also mentioned.Regarding the states in the region, the Foreign Ministry notes that "Romania will continue to actively provide assistance and multidimensional support to Ukraine and will support the European, respectively Euro-Atlantic course and orientation, of Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia."Also, Romania will continue to provide to the Republic of Moldova political and diplomatic support with the reforms necessary for its European course, in terms of economy, energy security and other relevant fields. The increased engagement at the level of the Moldova Support Platform launched by Romania together with Germany and France is mentioned in this context.Moreover, the Romanian Foreign Ministry shows that it will contribute to the preparation of the Three Seas Initiative Summit which will be hosted in 2023 by the President of Romania in Bucharest; the Ministry calls for "the continuation of a pragmatic diplomacy connected to Romania's goals regarding economic and technological progress, regional, European and global connectivity."Romania will celebrate in 2023 three decades of full membership of the International Organization of La Francophonie, and the 30th anniversary of its joining the Council of Europe.According to the report, in order to reform the institutions of Romanian diplomacy from within, "the Foreign Ministry will continue to take steps for the periodic organization of contests for admission to the country's Diplomatic and Consular Corps, so that the entire staff requirements are gradually covered." Also, measures to modernize and streamline the activity of the Romanian Diplomatic Institute will be continued.At the beginning of 2023 Romania takes over two new terms as NATO Contact Point Embassy - CPE in Georgia, respectively in Jordan, for a period of two years, following NATO's relevant decision.In Georgia, Romania will for the first time exercise the CPE role jointly with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. This is the third time that Romania holds this office in Georgia, after previously serving as Contact Point Embassy here in the period 2013-2016.

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