A delegation from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) headed by Assistant Secretary for European Affairs Maria Zeneida Angara Collinson met with a delegation from Romania led by Ms. Carmen Liliana Burlacu, Director General of the Office of Globalization of the Romanian Foreign Ministry, at the 5th Political Consultations between both countries led in Bucharest last May 5. Philippine Ambassador to Romania Eleonor Jaucian and DFA Director Lenna Eilleen De Dios-Siso composed the other members of the Philippine Delegation.
The meeting discussed four key areas of cooperation, namely agriculture and the agro-industrial sector; energy, oil and gas; disaster risk reduction; and tourism. Romania offered to host the training and exchange of engineering students/professionals wishing to pursue further studies in the energy sector through its summer programs at the Oil and Gas University of Ploiesti.
With the Philippines hosting the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction and Management and Romania hosting the ASEM Seminar on Sustainable Development and Water Management this June, both countries agreed to support each other and to recommend experts to participate in the said conferences.
One of the highlights of the consultations was the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the DFA’s Foreign Service Institute (FSI) and the Romanian Diplomatic Institute (RDI). The MOU, signed by Ambassador Jaucian and RDI Director General Dan Petre, aims to increase contact between both institutions through the sharing of best practices in diplomatic training and the exchange of experts, visits, and publications.
Assistant Secretary Collinson and her delegation were received by Romanian State Secretary for Foreign Affairs Radu Podgorean where the two sides discussed regional and international issues. The two senior officials agreed on the important role that international law played in the peaceful settlement of disputes.
Senator Gabriel Mutu, Vice Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Romanian Parliament, and Deputy Radu Bogdan Timpau, President of the Romania-Philippines Parliamentary Friendship Group, received the Philippine delegation during their visit to the Romanian Parliament.
Senator Mutu informed Assistant Secretary Collinson that the Romanian Parliament recently ratified the Partnership Cooperation Agreement (PCA) between the Philippines and the EU. The PCA, once signed or ratified by the majority of EU Member States, will pave the way for a full-scale free trade agreement between the Philippines and the EU.
The Philippines established diplomatic ties with Romania on 29 February 1972. This was the first relationship the Philippines established with a then-communist country. Romania is now a member of the European Union and is the largest country in the Balkans, a region in southeastern Europe.
Press release courtesy of the Department of Foreign Affairs, 15 May 2014.