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Key Economic Data 
 
  2003 2002 2001 Ranking(2003)
GDP
Millions of US $ 60,358 44,428 38,700 52
         
GNI per capita
 US $ 2,310 1,850 1,720 100
Ranking is given out of 208 nations - (data from the World Bank)

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Update No: 131 - (28/04/08)

Transylvania - the forbidden country
The Romanians have done a double turn. We knew them of old. But whereof they come? 

Romania has come in from the cold in no uncertain manner. In the grip of a vile dictatorship for decades, a repellent pair of scoundrels in charge, the Ceaucescus, it has now become since January 2007 a member of the EU and host in April 2-4 to the latest NATO summit no less. 

It did not cover itself with glory on this occasion. Bucharest angered the Macedonians by buckling under to Greece, which exercised a veto on Macedonia's inclusion unless it makes a name change and calls itself something other than the name of Alexander the Great's original place, that also of his father, Philip of Macedon. Romania also opposed Georgia 's accession, which immediately led to the Russians trying it on in Abkhazia, by downing a Georgian drone. (See Georgia)

Romania has for long been a prime geopolitical prize of the West. Ceaucescu was a most sinister man, who strangely found high favour in Western counsels. His country was, as it still is, most strategically placed. That is why.Romania, Croatia, Serbia sign agreement on Constanta-Trieste oil pipeline 

This is evident in the energy sphere. Romania, Croatia and Serbia signed here on April 22 an agreement on the setting up of a company to develop the Pan European Oil Pipeline (PEOP) linking the Romanian Black Sea port of Constanta to Trieste, Italy. Croatia is the crucial intermediary.

"The project company will be registered in 45 days in London, where it will have its social headquarters," State Secretary at the Romanian Economy Ministry Viorel Palasca said at the time. It will be up and running by June. 

The company will have 2,100 shares carrying a par value of 100 pounds sterling. Romania will hold one third of the company's share capital, via the two companies appointed to represent Bucharest in the PEOP project, namely Conpet and Oil Terminal, which are to participate 35,000 pounds each. 

Transnafta Company and Croatia by Janaf Company represent Serbia, which are also to hold each a third of the shares. 

"We await the involvement in this company of Slovenia and Italy, which are yet to appoint the companies to represent them in this project. Italy, most likely, will give us an answer after the new government is made up, so that we have positive signals from them," Palasca said. 

He stressed that the role of the development company will be to promote the PEOP project, so as to attract investors. "We discussed with representatives of Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan and they said they are interested in being at least suppliers in this project, and even investors and participants," the Romanian official said. 

A feasibility study of the project has already been made in partnership with the World Bank. According to the survey, the capacity of the pipeline will be 60 million tonnes a year, it will be built during 2009-2013, with the funds required to complete the project ranging from 2.9 billion euros to 3.3 billion euros. 

Constanta-Trieste is one of several competing or complementary pipeline proposals, for transporting oil from Kazakhstan via the Black Sea to European consumer markets. The project envisages construction of a pipeline from the Black Sea port of Constanta, passing through the territories of Romania, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia and terminating at Trieste in Italy. 

Kazakstan anticipates an output of 100 tons to 110 million tons of oil annually by 2010 and 150 million to 160 million tons annually by 2015 and thereafter. Such volumes necessitate multiple export outlets. Italy has the largest refining capacities of any European country. From Trieste, moreover, the proposed pipeline can be connected with the Trans-Alpine Pipeline Network, which links Italy with Austria and southern Germany. 

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