President Rumen Radev Took Over the Hosting of the Next Summit of the Three Seas Regional Initiative
At a symbolic ceremony in Tallinn, President Rumen Radev took over from his Estonian counterpart Kersti Kaljulaid the hosting of the Three Seas Regional Initiative, which unites 12 countries from Central and Eastern Europe. “Bulgaria will not focus solely on the current challenges. Our ambition is to lay the stress on the challenges of the future and to find common solutions to them,” the President said upon taking over the hosting.
After the end of the meeting in Tallinn, the Bulgarian Head of State said that as host our country will continue to promote the top-level political dialogue between the participating countries. Together with the other countries Bulgaria will continue to develop mechanisms for improving the decision making process within the Three Seas Initiative. “This is essential so that we can attract the still hesitating countries to the Investment Fund and also international financial institutions and representatives of the private sector,” President Radev said. He identified defining the criteria for the profitable projects and establishing clear criteria for allocating resources as the greatest challenges. The President called for more promptly moving from political talking to real actions.
We should show that we have a winning concept and a more practical orientation of the Initiative for achieving success, Rumen Radev further said. In his words, the countries can achieve an equal allocation of their resources if they create sustainable ties between the universities, scientific institutions and research units of young people in the whole region. Therefore one of the priorities when Bulgaria is host of the Initiative will be the development of educational and scientific connectivity. The goal is to find in the transport, energy and scientific areas smart decisions for the future, based on joint projects launched by research teams and the young people in the region. By pooling efforts and mobilizing our potential, our countries are capable of ensuring strong energy, transport and digital connectivity, the Bulgarian Head of State said at the joint news conference with his counterparts from Estonia and Poland – Kersti Kaljulaid and Andrzej Duda.
The expansion of the geographical scope of the Initiative is also essential and will be yet another priority of Bulgaria. “Greece and Cyprus are natural partners of the Initiative and I am sure that sooner or later they will join in,” Rumen Radev said. In his words, the already launched transport, energy and digital projects with these countries should be used. He gave as an example the gas interconnector between Bulgaria and Greece, on which work is done, the Trans-Adriatic gas pipeline, the opportunities created by the exploited deposits in the eastern Mediterranean, the liquefied gas terminals.
The Bulgarian Head of State voiced gratitude on behalf of the other participating countries in the Initiative for the efforts put in by Estonia when the country was host of the Initiative. “Estonia made Three Seas a developed platform for regional development,” Rumen Radev said and added that during the pandemic the country revealed the strength of the digital society.
The President of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid noted, for her part, that the year of Estonia’s hosting the Initiative can be identified as the year of consolidation. The Initiative acquired a more practical orientation and became more visible, she stressed.