The proceedings of the 22nd meeting of the Romanian-German Intergovernmental Commission for matters concerning ethnic Germans in Romania, organised today, June 13, 2019 in Sibiu, were chaired by the two co-presidents: George Ciamba, Minister Delegate for European Affairs, and Bernd Fabritius, the German Federal Government’s Delegate for immigrants and national minorities within the Federal Ministry of Internal Affairs. The Romanian Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, Emil Hurezeanu, and the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Romania, Cord Meier-Klodt, also attended the meeting.
The meeting brought together representatives from the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania, from the associations of Saxons and Swabians in Germany, from the prefect’s offices in the counties with a significant German community, and from the Romanian and German line ministries with responsibilities in the field.
The session included discussions on the implementation stages of the projects included in the Protocol concluded during the previous session of the Joint Commission (Berlin, June 2018), and an agreement was made to initiate new projects aimed at maintaining and consolidating cultural identity of German minority individuals in Romania.
“The German minority in Romania has always been the foothold for constructive dialogue between Romania and Germany, acting as a true bond between our countries, therefore today bilateral relations with our German partners are strong and privileged. Political consultations have seen a sustained rhythm lately, and bilateral economic relations have evolved, with a rising level of trading”, said minister George Ciamba. He also reminded that Germany has been for many years Romania’s primary commercial partner and the third-ranking investor in our country.
In this respect, Minister for European Affairs George Ciamba restated that the Romanian Government is especially dedicated to providing a favourable environment in order to maintain the identity of the German minority, and the achievements of the Romanian-German collaboration on this topic are seen as a model at a European level.
While reminding that Romania’s first-time Presidency of the European Union Council is run under the principle “cohesion as a common European value” construed as unity, equality of treatment and convergence, the Romanian official pointed out the importance of national cohesion in a broader context of European cohesion.
In this context, a highlight was made of the efforts the two parties made to preserve cultural heritage, especially fortified churches, which constitutes one of the Romanian Presidency’s objectives – an aspect also approached during the informal meeting of European Affairs ministers on the topic of the European cultural heritage (Paris, May 3, 2019), co-chaired by Minister George Ciamba.
The parties negotiated and adopted the Protocol of the 22nd meeting of the Commission, which establishes the main cooperation objectives of the two governments in the field, as well as the framework for subsequent development of projects addressed to ethnic Germans in Romania.