Romanian President Traian Basescu warned in an interview with the International Herald Tribune in late August that a recent clash of opinions in Britain on a possible wave of immigrant workers from Romania once the country joins the EU is a politically fueled issue.
He said opinions of several British officials and politicians that restrictions should be imposed to stave off an expected flow of Romanian immigrants has nothing to do with current realities in Romania.
He also warned that in case restrictions will be imposed against Romanian workers after accession Romania will respond in a similar manner. Westerners should not expect Romania to remain shy, he said.
His intervention comes after a series of British officials said possible measures to limit the number of Romanian and Bulgarian workers might be taken within months, despite such a move was not applied to the eight CEE countries that joined the EU in 2004.
The idea was supported by Opposition politicians in London and much of the tabloid media, but challenged in more serious newspapers who quoted experts and analysts claiming that Britain had more benefits and less problems with the large number of Eastern European workers who’ve come to the country since 2004.
Romanian EU Integration Ministry officials quoted their own evaluations supporting the idea that Britain had nothing to worry about a major flow of Romanian and Bulgarian immigrants and said London should expect no more than 50,000 Romanian workers - not the several hundred thousands invoked in various British studies.
British officials said a decision on possible restrictions would be made after the EU presents its last report on Romania this autumn.