site.btaUnity, Specific Actions and Benefit for Citizens Are Key for EU as Leader in Decision-making – Deputy PM Gabriel in Bled
Unity, specific actions and benefit for citizens are key for the EU as a leader in decision-making, Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mariya Gabriel said in a speech at the Strategic Forum in Bled, Slovenia, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Wednesday. The European Union: The Decision Maker? panel discussed the need for future EU reforms, enlargement and member states' expectations. The Deputy Prime Minister stressed that the balance between expectations and results should be the leading factor in the debate. An example was given with the Schengen membership of Bulgaria and Romania and the criteria the two countries have met for years.
Another highlight of Mariya Gabriel's speech at the forum was the opportunities for streamlining decision-making processes at European level. "EU decisions must address global challenges, provide an inclusive approach to solving them and bring benefits to citizens, EU member states and our relations with strategic partners," Gabriel said.
Gabriel emphasised three key words in her statement: unity, specific actions and benefit for citizens. "It is important to give visibility to European success stories and base our approach to tackling global challenges on common European principles and values such as democracy, freedom and equality. Citizens and young people have a key role to play here. Let us make sure that their ideas are at the heart of finding and responding to challenges, so that the EU is a leader in decision-making", the Deputy PM concluded.
Bulgaria's Schengen membership was a central topic at all of Gabriel's bilateral meetings, with strong support for Bulgaria's accession expressed by Hungary, France, Slovenia, Portugal, Sweden, Croatia.
At the forum in Bled, Gabriel held meetings with OSCE Secretary General Helga Schmid, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto and Serbian European Integration Minister Tanja Miscevic, as well as with Laurence Boone, Minister of State for Europe of France, who confirmed Paris' support for Bulgaria's accession to Schengen.