Romanian EU Accession Debate

Just bumped into 2 interesting articles on Romania published these days in some international magazines.

First, published by Manuela Paraipan in The Global Politician, Romania: In or Out of the Anglo-American Axis?:

From the beginning of his mandate as a President of Romania, Traian Basescu declared himself a supporter of the so-called Axis of Washington-London-Bucharest. The idea was received with a cold attitude by the European powers, especially by the Germans and the French – long time friends of the country. Nonetheless, it became the leit motif of Romania’s foreign policy.

But apparently the interest for this friendship axis is almost non-existent from both the UK and the USA. When the Romanian authorities asked for a visa-free entry in England and America for the Romanian citizens, the response was a clear and concise ‘no’! But, when the Romanian troops were needed in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere on this globe, the answer was “Yes, Sir!”

Some felt that there is something wrong with this picture. Is Romania a friend country of the world powers? Or merely their hobbyhorse?

And more than that, related with Romanian EU admission:

In this regard, Mihai Razvan Ungureanu stated that the EU officials in spite of their critiques do not have a plan B in case Romania and Bulgaria fail to join the EU in January 2007. Ungureanu said: “Not even the Brussels bureaucracy has considered the accession of Romania and Bulgaria in 2008. There is much trust that the two states will accomplish missions and become members of the EU in January 1, 2007.”

With a poor Romanian lobby for the accession, with a political class lacking the stamina to urge clear reforms, with a justice obedient to the interests of various politicians and mafia bosses, the chances of seeing an European Romanian any time soon are indeed very low.

More on the subject, in an Oxford Business Group article published by Turkish Daily News (free registration required):

the question of Romanian accession as a whole has come back onto the political agenda elsewhere in Europe, particularly since doubts over enlargement surfaced with such force in the EU constitutional referenda in France and the Netherlands earlier this year. […]

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder told Deutsche Welle on Aug. 10 that Romania and Bulgaria could see their EU entry delayed by one year due to an invocation of the safeguard clause in the enlargement treaty signed with both back in May.[…]

Adding more gloom was a poll of analysts undertaken by Reuters on Aug. 8-11. Romania’s chances of joining the EU in 2007 were thought to be 50 percentĀ or higher by only 26 out of the 34 analysts questioned — one less than for neighboring Bulgaria.

Yet for many the hope is now there that such uncomfortable thoughts may indeed serve as an impetus for the Romanian government and Parliament to press ahead speedily with the changes needed to meet the EU’s criteria.

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