The European Commission reacted on Tuesday to the Romanian Government's intention to reduce the VAT rate from 24% to 19% by announcing that such an "unilateral proposal" could have a negative impact on Romania's fiscal situation. The statement made by spokeswoman Annika Breidthardt indicates that the EC does not believe Minister Teodorovici assurances of sustainability.
The VAT rate reduction from 24% to 19% on January 1, 2016, is a risky move and a threat to long-term development, according to tax expert Dan Schwartz. "The sudden move from a high rate to a low one is dangerous and chances are high that we might see budget troubles and a higher than approved deficit next year," said Schwartz.
An employee earning the average salary in 2015 made 2.5 more money compared to the end of June, 2015, when Romania implemented the new currency (RON). However, when calculated in euros, the net average salary increased from EUR 201 per month to EUR 420 per month, according to data released by the National Institute for Statistics (INS).
Radu Ghetea, president of CEC Bank, told the ZF Bankers Summit '15 guests that the state bank under his management has the opportunity to gain market share faster than in the previous five-six years, but it still needs to find the capital that could support such growth.
Five of the top ten banks pay less than 1% per year on one month deposits, while 12-month deposits bring in between 0.7% and 2.7% per year. The market is flooded with liquidity and the bankers are trying to offset the low demand for new loans. UniCredit, BCR, CEC Bank, ING Bank and BRD pay between 0.1% and 0.8% per year on one month deposits, while Banca Transilvania, Volksbank, Bancpost and Alpha Bank still pay above 1%.
Standard&Poor's warned yesterday that it could downgrade Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, Macedonia and Albania should these countries' banking systems be affected by the economic crisis in Greece. Greek banks control "important subsidiaries" operating in these South-Eastern European countries and the rating agency fears a domino effect.
The Oradea authorities are building one of the most modern campuses in the country. Classrooms, laboratories, a library and a reading room, a gym, a dorm for 300 students and a mess hall are scheduled to be completed before the end of this year. The project's cost will pass EUR 10 million.
Two private companies showed their interest in the construction project, but no work can begin before the land ownership issue is dealt with. The land was leased to the County Council for five years by the Potato Institute. Since the airport was not built, the property reverted to the Institute.
The Ministry of Education and the Chamber of Commerce signed today an agreement which focuses on promoting among Romania's students the dual education system, also known as the German system. More and more employers say that Romanian graduates struggle even with the theory and cannot be employed.
The Chamber of Deputies passed on Wednesday, in a 302 to 2 vote, the bill canceling certain fiscal debts imposed by the fiscal authorities in an abusive manner. The Minister of Finance announced after the vote that solutions are sought for those who had already paid such debts.
President Klaus Iohannis nominated yesterday Mihai Razvan Ungureanu to be the next head of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SIE). In accordance with the procedure set by the Constitution, President Iohannis sent an official letter to the heads of the two chambers notifying them of the nomination. The Parliament will hold a vote on the proposal soon. Should the proposal pass, Ungureanu would return to SIE after an eight-year hiatus.