Daily Newsletter - 1 October 2019


Macroeconomic News (3)

Unemployment rate down

The unemployment rate fell to a seasonally adjusted 3.8% in August, down 0.1 percentage points from the previous month, according to data released by the National Statistics Institute (INS) on Monday. "The number of unemployed (aged 15-74) estimated for August, 2019, was 343,000 people, falling compared to both the previous month (352,000 people) and the corresponding month of the previous year (367,000 people)," according to the official INS report.


Romania accounts for 8% of footwear imports to Austria

Romania sends 3.4 million pairs of shoes to Austria, one of the most developed economies in Central Europe. Austria imports 82 million pairs of shoes annually, worth USD 1.9 billion. Romania is responsible for 8% of imports by value and 4% by volume, which means that the average price of shoes coming from Romania is above average.


Timber exports up 8.9%

Companies involved in forest harvesting and exploitation reported 17.56 million cubic meters of timber exports for 2018, an 8.9% increase compared to 2017, according to data released by the National Statistics Institute (INS) on Monday.


Financial News (2)

Total external bank debt down EUR 1.3 billion

The long-term external debts of banks dropped to EUR 4.4 billion at the end of the first half of this year, down EUR 1.45 billion compared to the corresponding period of 2018. The short-term debt rose EUR 160 million to a total of EUR 3.6 billion.


IRCC to keep rising in 2019 and 2020

The upward trend of the consumer financing reference rate (IRCC) will continue in 2019 and 2020, but in a more unpredictable manner than ROBOR, according to Iancu Guda, President of the Finance-Banking Analysts Association of Romania (AAFBR).


Investment News (2)

Baneasa Airport to reopen next year

The Ministry of Transport announced on Monday the signing of a RON 55.5 million contract for rehabilitating the buildings of the Baneasa - Aurel Vlaicu Airport. The project is scheduled for completion in eight months.


Foreign direct investment up

Foreign direct investment in Romania amounted to EUR 5.26 billion last year, up 9.8% on an annual basis, according to data released by the National Bank of Romania (BNR) on Monday. The balance of foreign direct investments as of December 31, 2018 reached EUR 81.12 billion, of which EUR 57.47 billion came in the shape of equity, including reinvested profit (70.85%), while EUR 23.645 billion was net credit received from foreign investors (29.15% ).


Legislative News (1)

Agricultural consolidation bill on stand by

There are 3.1 million subsistence farms in Romania at this time. These are households owning up to 5 hectares of land each. Romania has good farmland, but it is split into very small lots. The authorities drafted a bill for consolidating farmland in order to move the national agriculture sector from subsistence farming to small, medium and large farms.


Politics (1)

President Iohannis demands resignation of DIICOT head

President Klaus Iohannis said on Monday evening that Felix Banila, head of the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT), must resign over the poor handling of the Caracal murders case. According to the president, the prosecutors' conduct during the investigation caused suspicion and mistrust.


Social (1)

Number of college students twice higher compared to 1990, but half of 2007's number

Approximately 400,000 young people enrolled in undergraduate studies began the 2019-2020 academic year. Of these, about 25,000 are foreign students, of which over 90% attend the courses of state colleges. Compared to the peak years of student enrollments (2007, 2008 and 2009), the total currently stands at less than half, due to a number of causes: lower percentages of high school graduates who passed the baccalaureate exam, smaller number of people choosing to attend more than one university study program simultaneously (as opposed to previous years), demographic contraction of the college age cohort (19-23 years), increased dropout rates for pre-college years, and migration.