Daily Newsletter - 10 March 2020


Macroeconomic News (3)

CNIPMMR calls for urgent action

The National Council of Private SMEs in Romania (CNIPMMR) announced that it had received information from its members indicating a growing impact on various sectors of the national economy, following the intensification of coronavirus epidemic effects on the European Union. The council urged Romania's public institutions to take quick steps to avoid a crisis.


Investment in national economy up 17.9%

Investment in the national economy surged 17.9% in 2019, compared to the previous year. The net investment figure was RON 104.12 billion, the highest in ten years, according to the National Statistics Institute (INS). New construction works surged 32.5%, while construction companies poured 9.3% more funds into equipment, including vehicles.


Automotive markets begin 2020 with significant drops

New car registrations dropped 26.8% in Romania in February, compared to the corresponding month of 2019. The number of registrations reported by APIA for the first two months of this year amounted to 21,325 units, down 18% year-on-year. Meanwhile, used car registrations gained 1%.


Financial News (3)

Euro at new high

The national currency dropped RON 0.74 against the euro on Monday. The National Bank of Romania (BNR) posted a reference exchange rate of RON 4.8184 per EUR, a new all-time low for the national currency.


Chamber passes debtor relief amendment

The Chamber of Deputies' commissions reported out favorably the amendment to the debtor relief bill, according to a group representing debtors with loans denominated in Swiss francs.


OTP Bank logs RON 92 million in 2019 earnings

The gross loan portfolio of OTP Bank surged more than 20% in 2019, up to a total of RON 10.25 billion (adjusted for the exchange rate). New mortgages soared an impressive 74%, year-on-year, while the gross value of new personal needs loans jumped 15%. The after-tax earnings amounted to RON 92 million, up 65% year-on-year.


Legislative News (2)

Citu urged MPs to back Decree 1

Prime minister-designate Florin Citu, who is also the outgoing minister of finance, urged the MPs on Monday evening to support Decree 1/2020, as well as the decree doubling the child rearing aid by August 1, 2020. Citu told MPs that Romania needs financial stability at this time.


USR files environment bill

The Save Romania Union (USR) filed on Monday a bill that would establish a so-called Environment Crime Investigation Directorate (DIIM). The institution would be based on DIICOT, the organized crime unit, and would operate at the national level in order to identify and fight crimes against the environment.


Politics (2)

Parliament to vote on new cabinet on Thursday

The Standing Bureaus of the Chamber of Deputies and Senate decided on Monday that the Parliament would vote on the new cabinet on Thursday, at 16:00. The presidents of the two chambers asked the prime minister-designate to replace the ministers rejected by the Parliament's commissions.


PNL approves Dan, Chirica backing

The National Political Bureau (BNP) of the National Liberal Party (PNL) validated the support offered for the mayoral runs of Nicusor Dan (Bucharest) and Mihai Chirica (Iasi), according to party leader Ludovic Orban.


Social (2)

Romania has highest infant mortality rate in EU

Romania reported an infant mortality rate of 6 deaths per 1,000 live births for 2018, the worst in the European Union, according to Eurostat. Bulgaria ranked second to last with 5.8 deaths per 1,000. The EU average was 3.4 deaths.


Schools and kindergartens to shut down until March 22

Prime Minister Ludovic Orban announced that all kindergartens and schools will be closed between March 11 and 22. The measure, which could be extended if the authorities deem this necessary, is the result of large numbers of Romanians coming from regions strongly affected by the coronavirus epidemics, mainly Italy.