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Key Economic Data 
  2003 2002 2001 Ranking(2003)
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)

Books on Romania


Update No: 158 - (26/07/10)

Disaster strikes
Romania is a disaster-prone country. The four horses of the apocalypse have certainly bestridden its territory often and anon.

Romanian authorities said severe flooding was wreaking havoc across much of the country after rain-swollen rivers burst their banks and killed 22 people this week, destroying crops, bridges and hundreds of homes.

Despite protection dams, more than 2,000 people were evacuated from the eastern village of Saucesti on Friday after the River Siret broke through and inundated a hundred local homes.

In the eastern province of Galati, the Danube River passed record water levels previously attained in 2006.

Visiting one affected region on Friday, Romanian president Traian Basescu assured flood victims that they would be provided with building materials for new homes.

But northern and central parts or Romania will remain on code yellow alert for rain until Monday morning, as the possibility of further flooding continues.

Twenty-two people have died as a result of flooding in the past week.

The Black Sea ahoy
The disaster in the Gulf of Mexico has traumatised the world oil industry, not just the obvious culprit, BP. It has redirected everyone's attention eastwards. There is plenty of oil there and not so much fuss over an inevitable oil spill or two.

For instance, Edinburgh-based Melrose Resources is to focus its oil exploration activity on new prospects in Romania while it looks to pull out of the United States. The company has told shareholders it has won the right to explore in 2,000 square kilometres of Black Sea shallow waters off the coast of Romania. This includes one area where oil has been discovered but not extracted. It follows the resolution of a dispute over the area between Romania and Ukraine.
Melrose intends to spend 40m over the first three years of the concession, and will have an 80% stake in the venture, along with Petromar Resources.

The firm also has interests in Texas and New Mexico, and has announced it is looking to sell these so that it can focus on prospects in Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey and Egypt. This is expected to take six to nine months.

David Thomas, Melrose Resource's chief executive, said: "We are delighted to have been the successful bidder for two high quality exploration blocks offshore Romania and this represents an important milestone for the company as we seek to establish the country as a long term core investment area. We are also pleased with progress on our exploration work programmes in Bulgaria and Turkey."

Last year, Melrose had turnover of 150m on production averaging nearly 39,000 barrels of oil per day. It made pre-tax profits of 20m.