Romania is an independent nation in southeastern Europe. It occupies an area of 92,046 square miles and has a population of slightly more than 20 million people. Romania has membership in several international organizations, including the United Nations, NATO, and the European Union. Romania’s border is shared with other five European countries: Serbia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Moldova, and Ukraine. Romania is keen on maintaining good relations with its neighbors and has established strong ties with many foreign countries such as Switzerland, Australia, and the United States.
Romania shares a border with Serbia on the southwestern side of the country. The Romania-Serbia border is approximately 295.7 miles long, and there are a few border crossing points at which Romanian and Serbian officials regulate the movement of people and goods. Over the past few years, illegal immigration into Romania has been on the rise, especially as immigrants from Middle Eastern countries use the border to reach European states. As a result, Romanian officials have increased surveillance along the border to stop illegal immigration. Romania and Serbia have had cordial relations since the 19th century, and Serbia established its first official diplomatic post in Romania in 1863, while Romania created its own diplomatic office in Serbia the same year. Romania and Serbia have retained their embassies in the two countries to this day. Romania has supported Serbia in many ways, including in political disputes with other nations. Due to the good relationship between the two countries, some Serbs live in Romania, and similarly, some Romanians live in Serbia.
Romania’s border with Bulgaria is located on the southern side of the country. The Romania–Bulgaria border is 392 miles long, and part of the border is marked by Europe’s second longest river, the Danube. There are several border stations along the border, some of which are inland and others are located along the river. Romania and Bulgaria have been friendly neighbors for many decades. However, a minor conflict arose in the early 20th century, when Romania and Bulgaria fought over Dobruja. The matter was resolved when both countries signed the Craiova Treaty. Several roads and bridges connect cities between Romania and Bulgaria. For example, the town of Giurgiu, Romania is linked to the town of Ruse, Bulgaria by the Danube Bridge. Additionally, the New Europe Bridge that connects Calafat, Romania, and Vidin, Bulgaria was completed in 2013. Numerous trading activities occur between Romania and Bulgaria.
Romania shares its northwestern border with Hungary. The Romania–Hungary border is estimated to be 278 miles long and was created by an international commission of geographers and historians in 1920. There are more than ten border crossing points spread out along the border. Despite being close neighbors, Romania and Hungary have strained relations. The two countries have had several disputes that have led to serious conflict. One source of conflict is the demand for autonomy by certain Hungarian minorities in Romania. However, despite such disagreements, Romania and Hungary remain major trading partners. In fact, Hungary is Romania’s third largest trading partner. Similarly, large Romanian companies operate in Hungary. The two countries conduct transactions worth more than 7.3 billion euros annually. Romania and Hungary also compete in sports such as ice hockey and handball.
Romania and Moldova are neighboring countries that share a border along the eastern side on Romania. The Romania–Moldova border is 423 miles long, with various crossings scattered throughout the border. The border follows two rivers, the Danube and the Prut. Romania and Moldova have close ties due to their shared traditions and proximity to each other. In fact, Moldova was part of Romania for a long period of time, and so both countries share many common ties. Shortly after independence, Romania and Moldova established diplomatic ties that allowed Romanian and Moldovan nationals to travel between the two countries visa-free. However, disputes between the two countries emerged in 2007 when ethnic Moldovans in Romania were denied the right to register as a minority group. Romanian and Moldovan authorities did not agree over the matter, and in 2009 Moldova accused Romania of fueling riots in Moldova, which Romanian government officials denied. The dispute led to the expulsion of Romanian diplomats from Moldova. Some Romanians and Moldovans campaign for the unification of Romania and Moldova. However, the unification process has not received universal support.
Romania shares an extensive border with Ukraine along the northern and southeastern sides of the country. The border is approximately 381 miles long and was established during the Soviet era. Romania and Ukraine established diplomatic relations in 1992, and Romania opened an embassy in Kiev, while Ukraine opened an embassy in Bucharest. Additionally, Romania vowed to maintain good ties with Ukraine and Russia through the signing of a treaty in 2003. However, despite the treaty of friendship and cooperation, Romania and Ukraine have experienced some conflict. For example, the two countries fought over territorial ownership of Snake Island. Furthermore, the existence of natural resources in the Black Sea was also a source of conflict between Ukraine and Romania but was eventually settled by the International Court of Justice in 2009. Another source of dispute was the demand for Romanian citizenship by Ukrainians. Nevertheless, Romania works to have an amicable relationship with its neighbor Ukraine.
Romania’s Foreign Relations
Romania has diplomatic links with numerous countries throughout the world. The nation’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs actively seeks to establish good relations with other countries. Some of the key European partners with close ties to Romania include Germany, Italy, and France. Germany is the top importer of Romanian goods and services. Some of Romania's exports to Germany include automobiles, textiles, manufactured food products, and chemical products. Romania also maintains links with Asian countries such as India and China. Due to its good diplomatic ties, Romania receives the second highest amount of foreign direct investment in Central Europe. Some of the countries that invest in Romania include the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, and Italy. Large corporations from the United States, United Kingdom, Hungary, France, Finland, and Italy also operate in Romania.
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