The deputy head of the European Commission Franco Frattini starts a two-day visit to Romania on Monday with a first meeting with Romanian President Traian Basescu later today. He is expected to hold talks with PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu on Tuesday.

Prior to his departure for Romania, Frattini said that Romania recorded a substantial progress over the past year and a half, since the Tariceanu Government took office in December 2005, despite the country has many issues to be solved in the field of judicial reform and fight against corruption.

He said Romania must pursue its efforts until and after the EU accession, in key areas such as border management, fight against organized crime and money laundering.

And he said his visit to Romania aimed at encouraging the authorities in Bucharest and the citizens of the country to pursue the ongoing reforms so that the action plan for EU accession adopted by the government be adopted by September 2006.