(MENAFN- Jordan Times)
AMMAN — Jordan represents“a strategic pivot” in the Middle East and is one of the closest partners of the US and the transatlantic community in“this complex and important region”, said Romania's Ambassador to Jordan George Cristian Maior.
“Romania, as an important member of the European Union and NATO, as well as a reliable and solid strategic partner for the United States, is appreciated as a strong interlocutor with a balanced, constant, and constructive approach with respect to the regional dynamics,” Maior said in an interview with the Jordan News Agency, Petra, on the occasion of his country's national day.
The ambassador said that relations between Romania and Jordan have a long history of political, economic, and cultural cooperation over the past 56 years.
“In 2021 we can say that our partnership is stronger than ever,” the ambassador said.
“During my meeting with His Majesty King Abdullah, on the occasion of the presentation of credentials on September 1, I had the privilege to personally witness the mutual great appreciation that exists between our two nations, as well as the great future that lies before us in regard to our partnership, bilaterally, regionally and strategically,” the envoy said.
Maior pointed to the intense calendar of bilateral visits amid the pandemic, highlighting the visit of Romanian foreign minister to Jordan earlier this year. The ambassador also noted that Romania is looking forward to hosting Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi and other Jordanian officials in Bucharest.
Touching on trade relations, Maior said that in August 2021, the volume of bilateral trade increased by 72.37 per cent compared with the same period last year.
“The high level of stability and a modern entrepreneurial sector also represents a key factor for Jordan to be considered a regional hub for investment,” the ambassador said.
Romania ranks among the first 15 exporting countries to the Kingdom and is third among EU member states, the ambassador said.
Cereals and livestock are among the main exports to Jordan from Romania, he said.
The total investment of nearly 3,500 registered Romanian companies that have Jordanian capital reached nearly $28.5 million as of last month, Maior said noting that“this proves Romania offers a favourable and friendly business environment for the Kingdom's investors”.
Regarding tourism cooperation, the ambassador said that Jordan has become one of the top Middle East destinations for Romanian citizens, reaching a peak of more than 15,000 tourists in 2019.
“Even in the hard times of the COVID-19 pandemic, Romanian travel agencies were among the first foreign entities to organise trips to the Kingdom,” he said.
On the topic of academic cooperation, the envoy said that Romania has more than 10 Erasmus Plus agreements with different Jordanian universities and efforts are under way to increase this number.
“Bilaterally, the two sides are collaborating based on the Programme of Cooperation in education for 2019-2024. Thus, the Romanian government has increased the number of scholarships for Jordanian students to more than 50 yearly for bachelors, masters and PhD specialisations.
Speaking about Romania's position on the Palestinian issue, the ambassador emphasised Bucharest's“traditional, constant stance and ongoing support for implementing the two-state solution, Israel and Palestine, to coexist in peace and security under international law”.
The ambassador also highlighted that the two countries have a close relationship and active coordination on complex issues of regional concern, such as terrorism, violent extremism and radicalisation, the Middle East peace process, the crisis in Iraq, the Syrian conflict and humanitarian and refugee matters, he said.
“Romania has always voiced its support for the Hashemite Kingdom's aspirations for closer cooperation with the EU, including through the opportunities offered by the innovative new Agenda for the Mediterranean. We also support a closer cooperation with NATO,” Maior said.
The ambassador also noted that the Romanian community in the Kingdom of Jordan stands at over 5,000 people, the majority being part of mixed families.
“Along with a Romanian community, we have the benefit of more than 14,000 Jordanian citizens who studied in Romania during the last decades, and we consider them to be true friends of Romania,” he said
Commending on the cooperation between the countries amid the pandemic, the envoy said:“We had a common stance to confront the pandemic, and we are happy we could have close cooperation and coordination.”
“I would like to take this opportunity to commend the Jordanian authorities for their take on this unprecedented global crisis and the constant support granted to the Romanian community,” the ambassador said.
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