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Georgian Press: Romania is one of Georgia's 'best friends'Updated: 01-04-2010 | Regional Europe

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Romania Teodor Baconschi paid an official visit to Georgia on March 30. After laying a wreath at the memorial to the soldiers who died for the unity of Georgia, Baconschi held a meeting with Grigol Vashadze, his Georgian counterpart, at which they discussed a variety of issues concerning the political, economic and humanitarian cooperation between the countries, The Messanger daily reports.

"We had a really interesting conversation about economic projects we may launch together. We have a huge trade turnover with Romania. Our countries are divided only by the Black Sea, but we still have to seek an efficient way to cooperate in order to strengthen our economic relations," Vashadze said after the meeting.

"I feel very much at home in Tbilisi because Tbilisi is part of Europe. Your country has been successful in establishing ongoing reforms, which will be positively reflected in relations with European structures. Romania has a strong interest in your country in a variety of areas. Issues like trade, investment and energy security are the most important. We are now just waiting to see the results of Mikheil Saakashvili, the President of Georgia's, visit to Bucharest, where he will meet Traian Basescu, President of Romania. The close relation between the two Presidents is very important for both countries. Romania is among those 'best friends' who are always promoting Georgia's integration into the EU and NATO," Baconschi said, stressing that the Government of Georgia has been carrying out a well-balanced foreign policy, which is so important for the country.

Teodor Baconschi expressed his country's support for Georgia's sovereignty and territorial unity and stressed that Romania fully supports Georgia in its attempts to establish all the reforms aimed at simplifying the visa regime with the European Union. The two sides agreed to establish a Department of Romanian Language and Literature at Tbilisi State University and a Department of Georgian Language and Literature in Romania as a sign of their partnership.

Political analyst Ramaz Sakvarelidze told The Messenger that such business visits have become seldom in Georgia lately. "There is a particular distance being shown towards us by Western Europe, especially since the August war, while Eastern European delegations have become more frequent visitors to our country. All this demonstrates that the political phenomenon of war is more familiar to Eastern Europeans and Georgia's so-called anti-Russian policy even strengthens their interest in our country," Sakvarelidze told us.

"It is really difficult to make any predictions about developing the economic environment with the support of Romania as there have even been some difficulties in launching the existing projects. Making investments is not an issue which should be discussed in political terms, as these should be prompted by the relevant economic background. Romania has also faced an economic crisis in 2008 so that country has a lot of internal problems which are still to be dealt with," economic analyst Gia Khukhashvili told us, adding that the meeting of the two Foreign Ministers may produce some results but he couldn't make any predictions about the chances of the two countries being able to launch particular projects together.

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