Romanian companies exported in the first five months of this year EUR 1.14 billion worth of chemicals and related products, up EUR 30 million year-on-year, according to the National Institute for Statistics (INS). Imports amounted to EUR 4.4 billion, up EUR 198.7 million y-o-y.
An analysis of the statistical data from the first half of this year indicated that the construction and financial brokering sectors had stopped having a negative contribution to the GDP, according to statements made at a press conference held on Friday by Tudorel Andrei, president of the National Institute for Statistics (INS).
The Minister of Finance, Eugen Teodorovici, stated that the Romanian Cabinet wants to begin talks for a new agreement with the IMF and the European Union. The Cabinet is interested in a more flexible agreement that would gain the backing of all major political parties. Liviu Dragnea, interim head of the PSD, said that the party has approved the negotiations.
The retail and IT&C sectors had the highest contributions to the economic growth in both the second quarter and the first half of this year, according to the preliminary data announced by the National Institute for Statistics (INS). Total effective final consumption contributed 3.7% to the H1 economic growth rate, which shows that economic growth is pushed forward by consumption and not investment.
The shareholders of Banca Transilvania, the third-biggest bank in Romania, were called to a general meeting on October 8 in order to approve the merger with Volksbank and the updating of the revenues and expenses budget for 2015. The gross profits estimated by the bank for this year stand at RON 596 million, up 18% year-on-year. The biggest shareholder is the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, which holds a 14.3% stake.
Federico Ghizzoni, CEO of UniCredit, has recently refused to discuss rumors hinting that the Italian bank is preparing to lay off 10,000 workers. The CEO said that no firm figure had been agreed to yet. The layoffs would hit UniCredit staff in Italy, Germany and Austria.
Dana Demetrian, vice-president of BCR in charge of Retail Private Banking, stated on Friday, September 4, that the bank had agreed to reduce the interest rates of 3,000 clients in order to lower their installments. BCR has offered to reduce the interest rates for housing and mortgage-backed consumer loans by an average of 20%. Clients will pay a flat interest rate of 4.95% for five years or 5.95% for ten years. At the end of this period, the interest rate becomes adjustable, using the six-month ROBOR or EURIBOR indexes.
Supermarket chain Mega Image has opened three new stores: a Mega Image store in the Ilfov county and two Shop&Go stores in Bucharest and Ilfov. The retail now operates 433 locations in Romania under the Mega Image, Shop&Go, AB Cool Food and Gusturi Romanesti brands.
German discounter Lidl has reached 188 stores with the opening of a new supermarket in Voluntari, Ilfov county. The 1,200 sqm store is located on the Bucharest North Road, within the Pipera Plaza. This is the fifth Lidl store opening of 2015.
Henry Schein, one of the biggest veterinary companies in the world, has added EUR 9 million to the equity of Maravet Baia Mare. The US giant bought 50% of Maravet this July, thus entering the Romanian market. Last year, Maravet had a turnover of EUR 27 million, up approximately 20% year-on-year.
A new Labor Code was passed by the Senate and is now on its way to the Chamber of Deputies. The bill had been drafted by the National Labor Bloc (BNS) and among the changes it brings to the current rules is the compensation of additional work with paid leave in the 30 days following the overtime.
The Ministry of Energy (MEIMMMA) will be allowed to establish companies in the state's name, to increase the equity of existing or newly-established companies and to increase the equity of companies it is a shareholder of, according to a draft emergency ordinance posted on Friday on the ministry's website for public discussion.
Robert Negoita, mayor of Third District, is one of the Social Democratic Party's (PSD) options in next year's mayoral race, following the detaining of Sorin Oprescu, mayor of Bucharest. "We have two reserve candidates and Negoita is the most likely to get the nomination," said PSD sources.
The Minister of Education, Sorin Campeanu, stated on Wednesday that 800 schools servicing slightly more than 100,000 children were not issued new permits. "Unfortunately, I have to admit that most of these schools are located in rural areas, where drop out rates are rather high," said the Minister.