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ROMANIA


 

 

In-depth Business Intelligence

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)

Books on Romania

REPUBLICAN REFERENCE

Area (sq.km)
237,500

Population
22,355,551 

Capital 
Bucharest 

Currency 
Leu

President 
Traian Basescu

Private sector 
% of GDP 
40%


Update No: 100 - (25/08/05)

Premier stays
Following his announcement earlier in July that he would resign and call snap elections to strengthen his hand in order to implement key reforms, Prime Minister Tariceanu said on 19th July that he would rather stay on as priority had to be given to Romania's recovery from its recent disastrous floods. 
He said that it would have been cowardly for him to resign at this point. Mircea Geoana, the leader of the opposition Social Democrats (PSD) expressed support for Tariceanu's decision. "In a moment of a dramatic crisis for the country one needs a government and, between two evils, we choose the smaller one," said Geoana.
Meanwhile, Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn has reiterated that Bucharest had no time to lose with its reforms if it wanted to join the EU as planned on 1st January 2007.

Romanian Prime Minister confirms pending government re-organisation
Prime Minister Tariceanu, confirmed on 15th August that a government re-organisation would occur in the autumn. Talking to reporters, Tariceanu said the changes would affect both personnel and the government structure. He said he is particularly dissatisfied with the work of Health Minister Mircea Cinteza and suggested that EU Integration Minister Ene Dinga might also step down. Tariceanu also indicated that he agrees with those who want to split some "giant" ministries, such as the ministry of transport, construction and tourism.

Romania returns to budget surplus
Central Bank Governor Mugur Isarescu said Romania's economy is developing at a steady rate. He also said inflation is expected to drop to 7.5 per cent in 2005 and to 5 per cent in 2006, down from 9.3 per cent in 2004. 
Romania reported a consolidated budget surplus for the first quarter equal to 0.13% of gross domestic product (GDP), compared to a deficit of 0.14% of GDP for the same period of 2004, the Finance Ministry said in a statement. The first-quarter surplus amounted to 3.71 trillion lei (102.6m Euro/US$129.7m). Total revenue amounted to 190.4m lei in the first quarter of the year, up from 160.4m in the same period of 2004, the ministry said. The jump in budget revenue was mainly due to rise in collected corporate tax, social insurance contributions and value-added-tax (VAT) payments. 
This is good news, for analysts who feared that tax cuts could lead to mounting budget deficits noted that government cut income and corporate taxes from the beginning of 2005 IMF asked Romania to reduce its 2005 budget gap to no more than 0.5% of GDP, from the previous target of 1.5% of GDP. The Fund, however, later gave consent to Romania's cabinet to raise the budget deficit to 0.7% of GDP.

We need a security 'belt 
Romanian President, Traian Basescu, said at a recent meeting with students at the Sociology faculty that the Romanian authorities are considering finding a way to grant citizenship to the Republic of Moldova's Romanians. 
The Romanian head of state said that the Romanian authorities are considering lifting the freeze on the issue of citizenship, yet there are restrictions imposed by the Schengen Agreement and Romania's EU Accession Treaty. Basescu added that the formula accepted with (Republic of Moldova) President Voronin was "one people, two independent, sovereign countries," given that Romania and the Republic of Moldova have an undisputed common history. He stressed that the democratisation of Romania's eastern neighbour is a prerequisite to national security. 
"We need a security 'belt,' around our borders. Democratisation is not a mere political objective, because, if it were so, we would not allot all kinds of resources to contribute as much as possible to the creation of this sanitary space," Basescu stressed.

Romania, Greece focus on sustainable economic development
The third Forum Invest economic conference "Romania and Greece: Priority Policies for a Sustainable Regional Economic Development" was held in the Greek capital, Athens, on June 7th. The official reception was held on June 6th at the Romanian embassy in Athens. The forum focussed on the role Greece plays in sustainable regional economic development and how to approach the European Union through a sound business climate. Among keynote speakers at this event: Dimitris Sioufas, Greek minister of development, Evripidis Stylianidis, Greek deputy minister of foreign affairs, Yannis Pehlivanidis, vice chairman and deputy CEO, National Bank of Greece; Marcin Swiecicki, coordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities, Codrut Seres, Romanian minister for economy and commerce, Gheorghe Seculici, Romanian vice prime minister, Eugen Dijmarescu, deputy governor, National Bank of Romania.
More than 200 Romanian and Greek companies announced their participation. The forum also touched on national competitive advantages in the global economy; identifying and promoting joint projects in priority sectors, and attendees looked at how business is supported through European funds, local banks and international financial institutions. Co-organisers of the event were the Federation of Greek Industries (SEB), the Hellenic-Romanian Business Council, in cooperation with the Piraeus Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Sponsors were Banca Romaneasca SA, National Bank of Greece, Bancpost, Banca da Romana de Marfuri, LaDorna and the World Trade Centre Bucharest.

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AGRICULTURE

Mahindra & Mahindra eyes Tractorul 


Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd, India's biggest tractor maker, bid for Romania's Tractorul SA, competing with the country's biggest maker of tractors, MYO-O SA, a closely held Romanian maker of agricultural machinery, the state-asset sales agency AVAS said in a statement. The government put Tractorul SA back on sale after Italy's Landini SpA decided against buying the company. AVAS didn't give a date for awarding the sale. The government will select the buyer of its 80 percent stake in Tractorul following direct negotiations with the bidders, AVAS said. 

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AUTOMOBILES

Renault to invest in Romania 

Renault will invest more than 200m Euro (US$243m) to start a new investment project in Romania, the Prime Minister Calin Tariceanu said recently. 
Accoding to Ziarul Financiar, the French Group has chosen Romania for building a new gear boxes plant by investing some 215m Euro in the next few years, Ziarul Financiar reported. The Romanian authorities will participate with 17.5 per cent of the investment value by granting some 38m Euro as state aid covering four important sectors: the regional development, the environment protection, the training of the employees and the research- development segment. The world's fourth-biggest automaker already owns Romania's car manufacturer Automobile Dacia, which makes a successful no-frills Logan brand.

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BANKING

Regulator OKs HVB-Tiriac merger 

Romania's Competition Council approved the merger of HVB Bank Austria Creditanstalt (BA-CA) and Tiriac Bank, with the former in control, New Europe reported.
BA-CA will acquire 50 per cent, plus one share of Tiriac Bank's capital, and will continue controlling HVB Bank Romania with 50 per cent plus one share. The merger contract was signed in mid-June. The bank resulting from the merger, HVB Tiriac, will be the fourth largest bank in Romania, after BCR, BRD-Societe Generale and Raiffeisen. 

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ENERGY

Transelectrica eyes big investment 

Romanian utility Transelectrica's investment programme drawn up for the period 2001-2013 provides for 900m Euro, daily Bursa reported, citing Transelectrica manager Razvan Purdrila. 
The investment funds will come mainly from international bodies, such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB) and other similar bodies, but also from the company's own sources. They are meant for rebuilding network infrastructure and the electricity market as well as for the modernisation of interconnection lines.

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INDUSTRIAL OUTPUT

June industrial output up 1.6% 

Romania's industrial output rose 1.6 per cent month-on-month in June, a shift from a 4.6 per cent fall in May, propped up by energy and manufacturing sectors, the national statistics institute (INS) said recently, New Europe reported.
Industrial production edged down 0.8 per cent year-on-year June but rose 2.1 per cent over January-June from the same 2004 period, said the statistic institute. Labour productivity in Romania was up 5.1 per cent year-on-year in June and rose 4.8 per cent in the first half this year.

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MINERALS & METALS

Mittal Steel to raise output 

The Iasi-based Mittal Steel will increase its production of high added value products by 20 per cent, after having received the API 5L certification from the American Petroleum Institute (API), the company said in a statement, New Europe reported.
Mittal Steel Iasi obtained the API 5L certification, which is given for products that can be used in the oil and gas industries. API is the only institute in the world that issues certificates for products used in the oil industry.

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TELECOMMUNICATIONS

UPC to buy Astral Telecom 

Liberty Global announced that its European subsidiary, UPC Broadband, has reached an agreement to acquire from a group of Romanian entrepreneurs, foreign investors and AIG New Europe Fund, 100 per cent of one of Romania's largest broadband telecommunications operators, Astral Telecom SA (Astral), New Europe reported.
Astral currently serves approximately 890,000 video, voice and data revenue generating units (RGUs). Liberty Global already operates in other parts of the country through UPC Romania with over 360,000 RGUs. Liberty Global will acquire 100 per cent of the shares of Astral for a price of US$404.5m.

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