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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: 159 - (27/08/10)

A premature entry?
When Bulgaria and Romania were admitted to the EU in 2007, some of us thought it a precipitous step. For starters, droves of people could now move from the Balkans to the heartlands of Europe. Thousands duly did, including the gypsies, traditionally peripatetic after all.

Those of Bulgarian and Romanian citizenship (Roma to the fore) are not backward in their proficiency at crime and corruption, twin scourges of the body politic anywhere. In addition, as can be seen in many of the great cities of Europe, street begging has been elevated to a high art using cute babies and infants, supervised by a mum hovering nearby, or older persons feigning paraplegic immobility- ‘the collapse in the street’ scenario. These proclivities have been, if anything, encouraged and indeed emboldened by the larger stage offered by EU membership!

Roma evicted from France
The Romanians have a special affinity with France. Educated Romanians speak French as a matter of course and are ardently Francophile. The French for their part generally reciprocate, delighted that there is a country in Europe free of the deadly Anglo-Saxon bug and properly appreciative of the true home of European civilisation, France.

It is with profound feelings that the Romanians are reacting to the French expulsion of Romanian Roma of late. Their very name has always made the Romanians reckon themselves as the true inheritors of Rome. The Roma themselves (Gypsies in common parlance), acknowledge in their borrowed name their derivation from Rome, the true creator and cradle of Europe.

Romanian newspapers came out on August 19 with bitter criticism against French President Nicolas Sarkozy over the decision to deport Roma from France back to Bulgaria and Romania. The first dozens of Roma arrived in Bucharest airport after the French government followed up on earlier
vows to deport people from illegal camps in an alleged bid to stop crime and begging.

The Magyar angle
In sharp distinction to their Bulgarian counterparts, Romanian newspapers lashed out at the actions of French authorities, calling them “hypocritical” and “inefficient.” The Gândul daily claims that French President Sarkozy's campaign against the Roma actually aims at upping his public rating in France.

A point not lost on the Romanians is that Sarkozy is of Hungarian stock originally. The Magyars (Hungarians) are the hereditary foes of the Romanians, long in contention over the occupation of Transylvania.

The Romanians regard Sarkozy's expulsion order as a sly act of revenge for their repossession of Transylvania after the First World War.

Transylvania, renowned in folklore as the home of Dracula, is in fact a magnificent place, mountainous and strewn with mysterious edifices, nooks and crannies, worthy as a prize of war.

Sarkozy is French. Actually, Sarkozy, whatever his antecedents, is totally identified with France. He wanted the Roma out of it because they were proving a public menace there.

Unfortunately like many of a nomadic way of life, they are prone to leave a mess behind them, wherever they go, because they are moving on. That is why the French wanted them out. If you want to move on, move out!