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Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia: A strategic quadrilateral in Europe

By Constantin Radut

After two years, in 2015, when the former Prime Minister of Romania had an unsuccessful attempt to create a trilateral: Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, now, in October 2017, a strategic alliance between Romania, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia emerged in South East Europe. Today, after the joint meeting held in Varna (Bulgaria) of the Governments of Bucharest and Sofia, the heads of state governments met the President of Serbia and the Prime Minister of Greece.
Romania and Bulgaria, next to Greece and Serbia could become a power security centre for this side of Europe, on Tuesday said in Varna, the Romanian Prime Minister Mihai Tudose, at a joint news conference with his Bulgarian counterpart, Boiko Borisov.
The Romanian prime minister said that he was "very confident" that everyone would understand that "this team" was not "done against something or against someone", but only for Romania, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia to capitalize "how well, together, the great chances" they have.
"I am convinced that (...) we are in a very pragmatic partnership, we do not have time to lose, history does not expect us, we have an immense opportunity, which I am convinced that we are making fruitful," said Mihai Tudose.
According to him, the four countries have the same strategic interests: being energetically independent and having energy security.
"It is important the Serbia's gas interconnection with Bulgaria, it is important to interconnect Serbia with Romania on the electricity grids we are working on, but it is important that all four countries act as one partner for energy relations with the rest of the European Union and avoid dependence on a single provider, "Tudose said.
In turn, the Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said that a new group Visegrad, Balkan Group , was born in Varna on Tuesday. He said that through this initiative, the four countries are doing "a good thing for Europe", and their "voice" will be heard.
He said that, at the proposal of President Aleksandar Vucic, the next high-level quadrilateral meeting could take place in Serbia.
President Vucic said Serbia is "on the road to Europe." "I was grateful to Bulgaria, Romania and Greece, who are very supportive of us (...) Together, we can do many things for our citizens for their prosperity, so we have fewer problems than we have today," he said. Vucic.
At the same time, according to Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, the four countries can play "an essential role in the name of the progress, peace, stability and prosperity" of the whole area.
"The Balkans are a critical region for Europe, a region that has in the past created many anxieties, wars, confrontations, but today it can (...) create hope for cooperation and collaboration. (...) We decided to collaborate closely on many levels, such as energy, economy, transport, (...) but also crisis management, ie safety, "Tsipras said.

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The Romanian Business Journal
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