After assuming the Romanian premiership in June, Marcel Ciolacu made his first official visit to Germany as Prime Minister to meet with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The Prime Minister’s meetings with his counterpart Scholtz, senior German state officials, and business leaders were a resounding success that advanced the robust strategic partnership between the two countries.
During their discussions, Prime Minister Ciolacu requested Chancellor Scholz to further strengthen NATO’s eastern flank. As a vital anchor of NATO’s frontier, Romania aims to bolster security through more active international cooperation and an increased 2.5% defense spending. Currently, Romanian bases are already home to 4,000 U.S. soldiers with the 101st Airborne Division and a French-led battlegroup of 800 troops.
In another issue of vital interest to Romania, Germany committed to strong support for Romania’s admission to the Schengen customs free travel zone. Since assuming the premiership—and with the active support of the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union—Prime Minister Ciolacu has invigorated Romania’s push for Schengen accession with the unwavering goal of inclusion without any setbacks.
Ciolacu’s visit comes amid the prospect of even greater German investment in Romania. Prime Minister Ciolacu has opened additional opportunities for large Romanian companies to enter the German market. A major business forum will be organized in Berlin this Fall. Ciolacu has also made it clear that Romania is a natural choice to lead the reconstruction of Ukraine. Romania has made heavy investments to develop new capacity for assembling and producing armaments, which would benefit from German investments amid its “Zeitenwende”—the effort to prepare Germany for the new security environment.