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December 22, 2022

Romania Suffers €10 Billion Financial Loss Annually by Being Outside

Remaining outside the European Union’s borderless area of Schengen causes a total of €10 billion financial loss to Romania.

Such an estimation has been made by the Romanian Minister of Economy, Florin Spataru, on Thursday, according to Romania Insider, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

Spataru’s comments came following Austria and the Netherlands’ vote against Romania and Bulgaria’s accession to the Schengen Zone.

“Granting Schengen membership to Romania is a decision that should have been technical in nature, but it has been transformed into one that, from my point of view, undermines the principle of solidarity that we should demonstrate in every moment,” the Minister pointed out in this regard, according to Agerpres report.

The Economy Minister stressed that the majority of European Union Member States understood that Romania’s place is in the Schengen Zone before pleading with every EU ambassador.

For over ten years now Romania is waiting to become a member of the Schengen Zone, however, such a process has not been finished yet, even though the country has met all the needed conditions, including all technical conditions.

Through a unanimous vote, the European Union Member States supported Croatia’s accession to the Schengen Zone, but not also the accession of Bulgaria and Romania. These two countries could not enjoy visa-free travel to the Schengen Zone countries starting next year, after Austria and the Netherlands voted against their accession to the borderless area of Schengen.

The position of Austria and the Netherlands towards the joining of Bulgaria and Romania to the Schengen Zone was not only criticised by authorities in these two countries but also by those from other EU Member States.

The Interior Minister of Germany, Nancy Faeser, once again confirmed the support of this country for the accession of Bulgaria, Croatia and Romania to the Schengen Area, while she emphasized that she does not share the same opinion as authorities in Austria.

“I cannot understand Austria’s position in this respect. I know that Austria has big domestic debates over the issue,” Faeser said, according to a report published by Reuters.

Despite much criticism, Austria’s Federal Chancellor, Karl Nehammer,  confirmed that he supports his country’s position regarding this issue.

In addition, the Chancellor added that there would be no further Schengen Area extension as long as the EU’s external borders are not effectively protected.

“The misguided EU asylum policy has caused this situation. Now we will continue to fight in the EU to correct these mistakes,” he added, according to a Deutsche Welle report.

He stressed that 75,000 foreigners enter Austria without registration, adding that this is a security problem that must be solved once and for all.