Romanian President voices skepticism and disappointment on EU budget negotiations

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Romanian President Klaus Iohannis has voiced his disappointment and skepticism after the first rounds of negotiations and talks he had with the European leaders in Brussels, regarding Romania’s chances to obtain more money from the EU funds for cohesion and common agricultural policy, from the European Union’s multi-annual budget.

Iohannis said the results of the negotiations in the first day of EU budget summit is disappointing and that, most probably, a new summit will be needed to tackle this topic.

According to the Romanian head of state, discussions with the leaders of the European Council and of the European Commission had lasted until 6 a.m. “The result is at least disappointing: there has been no progress and stances have not come close. We are trying to see if we can obtain a progress in these negotiations. Most of us are pretty skeptical,” Iohannis stated.

He revealed the opinions had been quite divided. ‘We must put it plainly. There are member states that would like a considerably lower budget than the proposed one, while most of us want a budget at least as it has been proposed or even higher,” the Romanian president pointed out.

Iohannis argued that Romania needs EU funds for cohesion and agriculture, where the current budget proposal points to a significant reduction to which Romania cannot agree.

“I reiterated the importance of the cohesion funds for us, there is money that we have to invest in every community, money that practically is supposed to reach every Romanian citizens and that helps us reach a standard of living comparable to the one in other EU states. On the other hand, I underlined one more time that the Common Agricultural Policy is a basic pillar and for Romania it is very important, with a special focus on funds destined to the rural development, where we see now too high cuts. Moreover, we pointed out that a budget high enough is needed overall in order to finance the other EU modernization and research projects”, Iohannis explained.

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