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Bucharest, June 15 /Agerpres/ - Foreign Affairs Minister Bogdan Aurescu participated on Monday in Ohrid, Macedonia, in the ministerial meeting of the Central European Initiative (CEI), organised by the CEI Macedonian presidency, the main topics discussed being related to regional developments in South-Eastern Europe, the role and activity of the CEI and the broad regional inter-connectivity.

According to a release the Romanian Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE) remitted to AGERPRES on Monday, Minister Bogdan Aurescu underscored in his intervention the importance of regional cooperation and highlighted Romania's appreciation and support for the programme and priorities of the Macedonian presidency of the CEI.

In this context, according to MAE, the Romanian head diplomat gave guarantees that Romania supports the interconnection of the infrastructure networks in the region and their integration in the system of the European Union. Moreover, he showed that improving the physical infrastructure networks, but also ensuring some elements of soft connectivity necessary for the business and investment environment represent essential conditions for the integrated economic development of the CEI region.

Regarding the recent developments on a regional level, Romania supports the strengthening of the democratic values and principles and the expansion of the area of freedom and justice to the states of the Western Balkans and the Eastern Neighbourhood. Minister Bogdan Aurescu pleaded for the maintenance of the European prospects for the interested states, as a strategic option and as an incentive for the efforts of reform and for guaranteeing the regional security and stability, the press release also shows.

"Romania has been and is a direct beneficiary of the transforming power of the European Union, which led to the society development and to strengthening the security and stability of the environment we live in, after having fulfilled the conditionalities and having completely observed the assumed reform commitments. The CEI, through the role and instruments it has, must support the European bid of the states in the Western Balkans, but also of the eastern partners of the European Union," Minister Bogdan Aurescu said in the meeting, according to the release.

In the context in which the cooperation at the Black Sea is an important instrument, having potential including for the CEI member states, the Romanian head diplomat mentioned that Romania will take over, on July 1, 2015, the chairmanship-in-office of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organisation (BSEC), briefly presenting the objectives and priorities of Romania's mandate: the promotion of regional cooperation in the transports, energy and organised crime and tax evasion combating area, the BSEC institutional reform.

"Bogdan Aurescu voiced again on this occasion Romania's concern with the security situation in Ukraine, which continues to generate risks to the security and stability of the entire region, and maintain once more that Ukraine's territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence must be respected," MAE points out.

On the sidelines of the ministerial meeting, Bogdan Aurescu had a meeting with his counterpart of the Republic of Macedonia, as well as short talks with his Italian, Albanian and Serbian counterparts. AGERPRES

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