Press Room

Minister Delegate for European Affairs George Ciamba participated in bilateral meetings and attended the conference on the Transatlantic Strategic Dialogue during his visit to the USA

Type: 
Press release
Date: 
04/04/19

On April 4, 2019, the minister delegate for European affairs, George Ciamba, participated in bilateral meetings with Stavros Lambrinidis, the ambassador of the European Union to the United States, and Dan Brouillette, the deputy secretary of the US Department of Energy. The Romanian official was also a guest speaker in the conference on the Transatlantic Strategic Dialogue, a top-level event attended by high US and EU officials. On the margins of the conference on the Transatlantic Strategic Dialogue, George Ciamba had an exchange of opinions with Philip T. Reeker, acting assistant of the US Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs.

In his exchange of views with Ambassador Stavros Lambrinidis, Minister George Ciamba expressed the gratitude of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU for the way in which the ambassador took over his mandate and for his active engagement in representing the European Union in the United States of America from the very start of his office.

The Romanian dignitary pointed out that the Romanian Presidency had succeeded in concluding and reaching an agreement in almost 90 files, an unparalleled achievement for the past 10 presidencies of the Council of the EU. Ambassador Stavros Lambrinidis also congratulated the Romanian minister for the excellent outcomes so far achieved by the Romanian Presidency.

George Ciamba and Stavros Lambrinidis also focused in their discussion on the importance of advancing the strategic projects of the European Union. The Romanian dignitary highlighted that it was necessary to strengthen the transatlantic partnership across all its aspects, through a constant dialogue that should aim at levelling out difference of opinion.  

The minister for European affairs went on to explaining that enlargement remained a priority for the Romanian Presidency of the European Union. “Enlargement is a long-term investment for a stronger, more united European Union, one built on common values”, the minister highlighted.

Smart grid interconnections and their added value to a highly functional European energy market made another topic in the exchange of opinions between the dignitaries, in connection to the EU-US cooperation.

In their discussion, the two parties also expressed their concerns regarding the growth perspectives both in the United States and the European Union.

The bilateral meeting with Dan Brouillette, the deputy secretary of the US Department of Energy, focused on fields of common interest. George Ciamba emphasised that the Gas Directive represented a collective EU effort to ensure a consistent and transparent framework on third country natural gas interconnections. The Romanian official pointed out that the project helped materialise the EU’s commitment to strengthening energy security, an essential pillar of the Energy Union. 

The Romanian minister reassured the American dignitary that Romania would continue to support the importance of the transatlantic relationship.

In that connection, George Ciamba mentioned the example of the Three Seas Initiative (3SI), a European development project having a positive influence on the transatlantic relationship.

The 3SI Summit held in Bucharest last year marked the transition to a more pragmatic format, through a list of major transport, energy and digital interconnection projects endorsed at high level.

The two dignitaries also discussed about the Partnership for Transatlantic Energy Cooperation (P-TEC), a format launched by the US on the margins of the Three Seas Initiative Summit of Bucharest (2018), which was endorsed by Romania. Dan Brouillette welcomed the positive outcomes of the first ministerial meeting that launched the P-TEC format, an event that was held in Houston, on March 14. The American official expressed his appreciation for Romania’s position on the need to diversify the energy sources in Europe. George Ciamba and Dan Brouillette also reviewed the projects that would make an overall contribution to energy security, such as the vertical gas corridor, East Med or Krk.

Minister George Ciamba spoke in the conference on the Transatlantic Strategic Dialogue on the topic of “US-EU Trade Tensions”. The Romanian minister pointed out that the deep and fast changes taking place on the global scene gave rise to countless challenges, also affecting the transatlantic dialogue as well as the convergence of the EU and the US visions on the global issues. He pointed out that the transatlantic relation remained one of the most significant and solid partnerships at the global level, building both on a common set of values and on strong connections in the fields of the economy, trade, investment, of political and security cooperation. The Romanian dignitary focused on a set of aspects bearing on the EU-US trade relationship and pointed out the importance of the trade and investment partnership between the two actors. He also mentioned that their strong economic ties, accounting for about half of the world GDP and one third of the world trade, had generated economic benefits and opportunities and thus contributed to millions of jobs being created both in the US and the EU.

George Ciamba reassured that in its capacity as Council Presidency, Romania would continue to advocate for overcoming divergence and to act in order to strengthen the transatlantic relationship.

The Romanian minister pointed out that the transatlantic dialogue offered a solid foundation for a compromise in order to reduce trade tensions. He also appreciated that the political agreement that the American President Donald Trump and the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Junker reached in July 2018 represented an important step in the process of strengthening the bilateral trade agenda. The minister recalled the progress made in the executive working group set up specifically to discuss the points of divergence and to prepare the negotiations aimed at reaching a potential trade agreement on industrial goods.

George Ciamba pointed out that, traditionally, Romania was a supporter of the rule-based trade multilateralism, a fundamental prerequisite for an open and fair trade, especially in the context of the stronger reconfigurations on the international economic arena. The Romanian Presidency would therefore support the reform of the World Trade Organisation.

On the margins of the conference on the Transatlantic Strategic Dialogue, Minister George Ciamba had an exchange of opinions with Philip T. Reeker, acting assistant of the US Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs.

The two officials reviewed together topics of common interest such as: the enlargement of the European Union to include the Western Balkans as a priority of the Romanian Presidency, energy security and the outcomes of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU.