The European Cyber Security Competence Center in Bucharest could become fully operational in May, Sebastian Burduja, Minister of Research, Innovation and Digitization, announced on Monday.
“We are very close to the effective launch of the European Center for Competences in the field of Cyber Security, a great diplomatic victory that Romania registered a few years ago. Finally, this center is operational. There is a recruitment procedure for the head of this Center, at the European level and on our side. The Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digitization, the Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Romania and all the others involved managed to identify a space and practically put this center on the road. We want that, at the level of May, so very soon, the Center will be fully functional in Romania. As I discussed with Commissioner Thierry Breton (European Commissioner responsible for the internal market, n.r.), with Director General Viola (Roberto Viola, director general DG Connect, n.r.), from the Commission level , with all the other actors involved, we are talking about a Competence Center that becomes, in fact, the center of an ecosystem in the field of cyber security ice. This European agency, with strict quotation marks, the first entity of its kind in our country, must become the catalyst for an ecosystem that includes the academic area, the entrepreneurship area, so private companies, start-ups, but also the public area , in this partnership we are going to promote the image of Romania, the competences of Romanians in cyber security. We cannot afford to miss the chance to put this Competence Center in the field of cyber security, a true European Center of Excellence, in the middle of this ecosystem that will produce successful Romanian businesses for cyber security products”, Burduja told a video intervention, at a specialized conference.
The dignitary also underlined that one of Romania’s most important advances, in the cyber segment, is represented by the new cyber security and defense law. “This law, which we managed to promote through Parliament at the end of last year, survived the constitutionality test at the Constitutional Court of Romania and was also promulgated by President Klaus Iohannis recently, setting the framework through which Romania can respond to the new threats from the cyber area from unfriendly states, from non-state actors who seek to undermine Romania’s cyber security. The law appears after a ten-year deadlock, in which two previous attempts failed the test at the Constitutional Court of Romania. It is an important law that adds three new threats, including Romania’s cyber security. I mean disinformation campaigns, propaganda, cyber attacks, and the levers of the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digitization, as well as the other institutions in the government arc that deal with the cyber security of the country, to intervene when there are risks, vulnera abilities, attacks. Unfortunately, we really have this gap of ten years, in which, due to the lack of an adequate regulatory framework, Romania was the target of cyber attacks, some advanced, others basic. The important thing is that we have now succeeded and fulfilled an important and extremely difficult milestone in the PNRR. Together with the Ministry of Defense, together with all the institutions in the area of cyber security, we managed to fulfill the milestone and give Romania a framework through which it can combat these cyber threats”, said the responsible minister.
The proposal for the Regulation on the establishment of the European competence center in the field of industrial, technological and research in the field of cyber security was launched by the European Commission in 2018, being negotiated including during the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU, in the first semester of 2019.
The selection procedure for establishing the place where the new entity will operate was organized on December 9, 2020, in Brussels, and was completed, following the vote of the member states and an intense diplomatic effort by the Romanian side, with the choice of Bucharest. The member states entered in the competition were: Belgium (for Brussels), Germany (Munich), Lithuania (Vilnius), Luxembourg (Luxembourg), Poland (Warsaw), Spain (Leon) and Romania (Bucharest).