According to the Foreign Investors Council’s estimates, about RON 170
billion average annual investments are needed, from both public and
private sources, to make the transition to a green economy. According
to the European Union’s new targets for reducing greenhouse gas
emissions, Romania should make major changes to its energy mix in favor
of a higher share of renewable energy sources, gradually reducing the
contribution of coal.
A vital criterion for large investors
remains the stability, predictability, and transparency of the
legislative framework, as also highlighted by the latest edition of the
Business Sentiment Index (BSI) published by the Foreign Investors
Council. This criterion was not met for the measures taken by Romania
in the energy domain, most of them being adopted in 2022 through
emergency ordinances without the necessary time to consult with the
parties involved. Although important market players are making major
efforts to adapt to new regulations, compliance and implementation are
becoming increasingly burdensome given the tight deadlines, multiple
changes over the past year and imperfections in the legislation, and
thus the functioning of the market is affected. FIC reiterates the need
for a predictable legislative framework and consultation with the
business environment to reach the best solutions to ensure energy
security, protecting vulnerable consumers and the viability of all
actors involved in the energy sector, and at the same time, member
companies’ openness for dialog with state authorities to provide
analyses and the expertise of professionals from private sector. We
continue to be the partners of the Government in identifying
sustainable measures to overcome the energy crisis, but also to ensure
Romania’s economic development.
Foreign investments in Romania reached a record level of over EUR 11
billion in 2022. The total
balance of foreign direct investments amounts to around EUR 100
billion, both new investments and reinvested profits. The biggest
foreign investors in Romania are Germany (EUR 15 billion), Austria (EUR
11 billion), France (EUR 10 billion), Italy (EUR 8 billion) and the
United States (EUR 8 billion).
Romania ended 2022 with 16.37% inflation in December, after the annual
rate had peaked at 16.8% in November. The biggest price increase was
recorded for food, of 22%, compared to December 2021, according to data
from the National Institute of Statistics (INS). Meanwhile, the prices
of non-food products grew by 14.9% in December 2022 year-on-year and
services were 9.7% more expensive. Romania had had 8.2% inflation in
The vast majority of CEO respondents (98%) are bracing for an economic
downturn characterized by geopolitical tensions, supply chain
disruption and ongoing COVID-19-related uncertainty, but appear split
on its length, depth and severity. These are some of the findings of
the EY CEO Outlook Pulse – January 2023 that underline the uncertainty
that looks set to define the business environment in 2023.
Romania’s external debt, public and private one, reached nearly EUR 144
billion in November 2022, compared to EUR 137 billion at the end of
2021, according to the latest data published by the National Bank of
Romania. The increase is mostly due to private debt, as public external
debt decreased, even though slightly, from EUR 58.8 billion to EUR 58.4
The International Monetary Fund is unlikely to revise downwards its
2.7% global economic forecast in 2023, according to Kristalina
Georgieva, the managing director of the international financial
institution. She has added that the feared oil price boom has not
materialized and the labor market remains solid. Mrs. Georgieva has
pointed out that 2023 will be another "difficult" year for the world
economy and inflation will remain high, but nevertheless she does not
expect the IMF to revise its growth forecasts several times, as it did
in 2022, unless there are surprising developments.
The insurance market exceeded expectations with consistent increases in
the volume of gross written premiums in 2022. Underwriting reached RON
12.1 billion in the first 9 months of 2022, up by 23% year-on-year.
This market evolution, although driven by the dominant segment, namely
RCA insurance, following City Insurance’s bankruptcy, which was the
biggest collapse in the history of the market, has significantly
boosted underwriting in most counties in Romania.
Lucian Anghel, who led Banca Românească from January 2020 to December
2022, took over as Chief Risk Officer (CRO) at EximBank at the
beginning of 2023, following the finalization of the merger between the
two banks. The merger between EximBank, whose majority shareholder the
Romanian state is, through the Ministry of Finance, and Banca
Românească was officially registered with the Trade Registry Office, at
the beginning of January 2023. The price paid by EximBank for Banca
Românească was almost EUR 60 million.
The current account deficit grew to EUR 25.34 billion in
January-November 2022, compared to EUR 15.66 billion in the same period
of 2021. Given that international trade in goods generated an over EUR
8.5 billion higher deficit, the primary income balance deficit was also
on the rise, offset by the higher surplus in the services sector,
according to NBR data. The goods balance thus recorded a EUR 29 billion
deficit in the first eleven months of the year, up by EUR 8.59 billion.
The past few years have increased Romanians’ need for protection in
unforeseen situations that may affect their lifestyle, with the
macroeconomic and geopolitical context amplifying concerns about job
stability and family financial security, according to a press release.
In order to meet its clients’ needs, NN Romania has added job loss
insurance to the portfolio of protection solution offered to clients.
Bosch, the German engineering and technology company, plans to invest
USD 1 billion to manufacture components for vehicles using new
technologies. The investment will be made in China, the world’s largest
automotive market. The German company plans to build a research,
development and production unit for components for vehicles that do not
use conventional energy and have self-driving technology in Suzhou, a
city in eastern China.
The company Biochem from Constanta, which distributes grain seeds,
pesticides and fertilizers to Romanian farmers, controlled by
Constantin Chimișliu, has finalized construction works on a center for
the storage of organic grains in Lunca locality, Tulcea County. The
investment amounted to EUR 1.1 million, half of which was ensured from
European funds, agricultural engineer Constantin Chimișliu, who entered
the pesticides trade in 1991, told Ziarul Financiar.
Nestlé Hungária will create 250 new jobs at its unit in Bük, following
a 140 billion forint (EUR 350.6 million) capacity expansion investment,
Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Minister Péter Szijjártó has
announced. According to the ministry’s press release, the Swiss
company’s Central and Eastern European animal feed production center is
in Hungary, where this development will increase production by 30% and
is expected to take the export rate from 90% at present to over 95%.
The Minister of Culture has announced that he aims to change the
legislation based on which the position of director of the National
Theatre of Bucharest (TNB) is filled. He has pointed out that a theatre
such as TNB cannot remain under interim management for too long.
Minister Romașcanu has added that the "extensive" debate in Parliament
will probably take place in March. Mr. Romașcanu has also indicated
that the members of the ruling coalition agree with the change.
The agenda of the government meeting on Wednesday, 11 January included
a draft decision through which the rank salary and the professional
level salary earned by military personnel, police officers and prison
officers will be updated in proportion to the evolution of the minimum
gross basic salary in Romania. Another draft ordinance on the agenda of
Wednesday’s meeting was the one amending Article 4(2) of Government
Ordinance 26/1994 on the food rights, in peacetime, of national
defence, public order and national security personnel and of persons
deprived of liberty.
The European Union aims to adopt a new regulation by the end of the
year to restore natural ecosystems but several issues, including
forestry, still create controversy among EU legislators. In June last
year, the European Commission tabled a new Nature Restoration Law,
which for the first time introduces legally-binding targets to restore
degraded land and reverse biodiversity loss. The plan also includes a
EUR 100 billion budget for EU member states to restore nature in
agriculture, forests, oceans and urban areas.
The "New Home" program will continue in 2023 with a RON 1.5 billion
guarantee ceiling, the Finance Ministry announced on Friday, adding
that the project had been put up for public consultation. Financing is
granted in RON, for the purchase of a single dwelling, and the maximum
amount of the loan that can be accessed is EUR 66,500 - for residences
that cost maximum EUR 70,000, with a required down-payment of 5% and
EUR 119,000 - for dwellings whose maximum price is EUR 140,000, the
required down-payment being 15% in this case.
Health Minister Alexandru Rafila expects an increase in the number of
respiratory illness cases this week, after "little over 100,000 cases"
were recorded last week, and he expects the situation to be on a
downward trend towards the end of the month. The minister believes that
the threshold of 170,000 new cases per week, reached during the flu
epidemic of the 2018-2019 season, will most likely not be exceeded this
season. He has also announced that since the INSP report on Thursday,
which mentioned 15 deaths, there have been several more deaths caused
by influenza, and the total number is "somewhere around 20 deaths".