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      March 31, 2009


  FIC
No news for today
  Financial News
BCR signed a financing agreement worth up to EUR 100 million with EBRD
Financiara posted RON 89.7 million net profit for 2008
Societe Generale took over BRD shares accounting for 0.4425% of the bank's share capital
Credit Team to relocate some offices
Romsoft reported a 70 percent decline in sales
  Macroeconomic News
The analysts believe the central bank will keep the key interest at 10%
Fitch keeps negative outlook for Romanian debt
RON keeps gaining ground against the euro
  Investment News
Burger King opens eight Romanian restaurant
EIB is willing to invest EUR 1.5 billion in projects in Romania
  Legislative News
More than 20 NGOs are protesting the four draft codes
  Politics
Dumitru Prunariu could run for European Parliament
Ministers Gheorghe Pogea and Marian Sarbu to prepare the laws featuring the terms of the IMF agreement

   Financial News

 BCR signed a financing agreement worth up to EUR 100 million with EBRD

   Yesterday BCR signed a financing agreement worth up to EUR 100 million with the EBRD. The local bank will get the money in a single installment and will use it to issue SME loans. The EBRD loan will be used by BCR to finance private companies for production, investments, services and work capital on a medium and long term. (English source)
   (BURSA 10 ANA SABIESCU) --- Read article here

 Financiara posted RON 89.7 million net profit for 2008

   Financiara SA, BCR's investment company, saw its net profit go up 40 times in 2008 at RON 89.7 million due to the sale of its BCR Asigurari stake. In 2007, the company announced RON 2.2 million in profit. Financiara SA owns almost 23% of the BCR Asigurari capital. BCR Asigurari was sold in 2008 to Vienna Insurance Group together with BCR Asigurari de Viata for EUR EUR 244 million. (Romanian source)
   (ZIARUL FINANCIAR 3 ) --- Read article here

 Societe Generale took over BRD shares accounting for 0.4425% of the bank's share capital

   Since October 2008, Societe Generale, the main shareholder of BCR, has taken over shares accounting for 0.4425% of the local bank's share capital and paid RON 21.6 million in the process. The French group began to buy BRD shares on Oct 9 last year when it managed 58.3224% of the shares of the Romanian lending institution. Societe Generale continued to purchase small share packages in BRD increasing its stake at 58.7649%. The price of BRD share dropped over 10% yesterday at RON 5.8/share on the largest turnover on the market - RON 3.85 million. The bank's capitalization is of EUR 953 million for this quotation. (Romanian source)
   (ZIARUL FINANCIAR 5 ) --- Read article here

 Credit Team to relocate some offices

   The financial crisis affected the Credit Team chain, whose managers moved to cut costs by relocating some offices. The relocation has cut the company's costs by approximately 45 percent, compared to September 2008. (Romanian source)
   (BURSA 1 ) --- Read article here
   (BURSA 19 ) --- Read article here

 Romsoft reported a 70 percent decline in sales

   CNDPI Romsoft, operator of the Depozitul de Calculatoare chain, reported a 60-70 percent decline in sales during the first two months of the year. Adrian Furnica, CEO of Romsoft, stated that March's sales are nearly 10 percent below the level of January and February 2009. K Tech Electronics, operator of the Ultra Pro Computers chain, has closed 12 shops over the first three months of the year. (Romanian source)
   (ZIARUL FINANCIAR 1 ) --- Read article here
   (ZIARUL FINANCIAR 11 ) --- Read article here

   Macroeconomic News

 The analysts believe the central bank will keep the key interest at 10%

   Several economic analysts believe that today the Board of Directors at the central bank will decide to maintain the key interest at 10% and the RON and foreign currency mandatory minimum reserves at the current level. The commercial banks have to make mandatory minimum reserves at the central bank which would account for 40% of the foreign currency deposits and 18% of the RON-denominated ones. ING Bank economist Nicolae Chidesciuc estimates that the central bank will decide to maintain the monetary policy and the mandatory reserves but will relax the conditions for the reserves so that they would rule out long-term financing. Chidesciuc forecasts a gradual lowering of the key interest at 9% by year-end and believes that at some point the RON-denominated mandatory minimum reserves rate will have to be lowered as well. (Romanian source)
   (ECONOMISTUL 1 ) --- Read article here

 Fitch keeps negative outlook for Romanian debt

   Fitch maintained its negative outlook for Romania's debt following the signing of the foreign financing agreement worth EUR 20 billion with the IMF and other international organizations. The reason stated by the rating agency is the risk of failure to implement the needed reforms, said analyst Andrew Colquhoun. The foreign agreement signed with international financial institutions led to a 300 points drop Romania's in 5-year CDS quotations from the maximum level seen in February. UniCredit Tiriac Bank Chief Economist Rozalia Pal said the CDS quotations had a positive trend lately both for Romania and for the region despite the fact that this is not yet visible in stock markets trends. (Romanian source)
   (BURSA 2 ANDREEA ARABOAEI) --- Read article here

 RON keeps gaining ground against the euro

   The RON has kept gaining ground against the euro for the sixth day in a row, following the signing of the financing agreement with the IMF. The reference exchange rate announced by the Central Bank dropped to 4.2392 for the euro. Nicolae Alexandru Chidesciuc, senior economist with ING Bank, said he stands by the estimate that the exchange rate will reach RON 4.7 for the euro in the coming months as the Romanian economy keeps contracting. (Romanian source)
   (BURSA 1 ANASABIESCU) --- Read article here
   (BURSA 2 ANASABIESCU) --- Read article here

   Investment News

 Burger King opens eight Romanian restaurant

   Fast food chain Burger Kind has opened its eighth Romanian restaurant in the Bucharest Mall. The chain's managers announced that the investment in the building and opening of the first Burger King restaurant outside Bucharest and the one located in Vitan was nearly EUR 1 million. (Romanian source)
   (ZIARUL FINANCIAR 8 Alexandru Anghel) --- Read article here

 EIB is willing to invest EUR 1.5 billion in projects in Romania

   EIB is willing to invest EUR 1.5 billion in projects in Romania this year with funds equally divided among SMEs, industry, services, communications and infrastructure. Several local lending institutions will be involved in joint projects with the EIB. (Romanian source)
   (AZI 10 ) --- Read article here

   Legislative News

 More than 20 NGOs are protesting the four draft codes

   The draft versions of the criminal, civil, criminal procedure and civil procedure codes were written by the Parliament's commissions without any kind of consultation of the civil society, which is a breach of constitutional rights. More than 20 NGOs are protesting the drafting of the four codes. Today, March 31, the NGOs will meet with the Justice Minister and the Prime Minister. (Romanian source)
   (CURIERUL NATIONAL 1 ) --- Read article here
   (CURIERUL NATIONAL 16 ) --- Read article here

   Politics

 Dumitru Prunariu could run for European Parliament

   Florin Vlas, the President of PSD Targu-Mures, stated yesterday that Dumitru Prunariu could run for a seat in the European Parliament as a member of PSD. Vlas added that Prunariu, the only Romanian cosmonaut, is a well-known and popular man, who could garner many votes. (Romanian source)
   (CURENTUL 6 ) --- Read article here

 Ministers Gheorghe Pogea and Marian Sarbu to prepare the laws featuring the terms of the IMF agreement

   Ministers Gheorghe Pogea and Marian Sarbu were mandated by the Political Bureau of the majority coalition to prepare the laws featuring the terms of the IMF agreement. The laws will slash public administration spending in order to cut travel expenses and cars or furniture purchases, while jobs left vacant by retiring employees will not be filled. (Romanian source)
   (CURIERUL NATIONAL 10 ) --- Read article here

   
   
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