Polish, Romanian presidents want better bilateral cooperation

Jakub Borowski/PAP

The Polish and Romanian presidents have pledged to develop economic, military and infrastructure cooperation between their two countries.

The presidents were speaking ahead of a summit in Bucharest of nine Nato members that lie on the alliance’s eastern flank.

"We both want bilateral economic cooperation to be intensified," President Andrzej Duda said after a meeting with Klaus Iohannis, his Romanian counterpart, in Bucharest on Monday.

"I also would like bilateral military collaboration to improve, with a special emphasis on the modernisation of our armed forces," Duda stated, adding that there was a good chance to achieve this goal.

The Polish president told reporters that his conversation with President Iohannis also focused on the development of rail and road infrastructure, including the Via Carpathia project, a planned trans-national highway network connecting Klaipeda in Lithuania with Thessaloniki in Greece.

According to Duda, apart from improving the region’s infrastructure, these projects are important for security.

"They mean the possibility of a faster relocation of troops, not only by air but also by rail or road transport," Duda said, adding that no one should doubt the significance of the projects.

President Duda stated that he wanted Poland and Romania to develop energy cooperation, and expressed his hope that "some political changes and steps will take place in the near future" to help achieve this.

Duda also thanked his Romanian counterpart for his active commitment to the Three Seas Initiative, comprising countries between the Baltic Sea, the Adriatic and the Black Sea. He stated that, owing to his engagement, "it was possible to establish a Three Seas’ fund," that now includes nine states.

"The first investments from this fund are being carried out," Duda said, expressing his hope that the US would also join it.