Daily Newsletter - 19 May 2020


Macroeconomic News (3)

Romania must focus on encouraging local production, exports

"Romania must focus on encouraging domestic production and exports, given that opportunities for 'made in Romania' products will be significant in the medium and long term. Investor fears about investment safety and 'made in China' products will spur the relocation of some production facilities to Europe, and Romania must make all administrative and logistical efforts to be on the list of countries attractive for greenfield investment," according to an analysis published by Moneycorp Romania.


Unexpectedly strong Q1 allays some fears

The GDP data for the first quarter, released by the INS at the end of last week, sparked some hopes for a milder second quarter and a faster recovery, according to optimistic economists. The data showed a GDP growth rate of 0.3% in the first quarter compared to the fourth quarter of 2019, a slight increase, but an increase nevertheless. The real question is what happens in the second quarter.


TCG market grows

The Romanian market for Technical Consumer Goods posted a 3.6% increase in sales value for the first quarter of 2020, compared to the corresponding quarter of 2019. The growth rate was driven by the IT, office equipment and small appliances sales. The telecom sector saw a 2.3% increase.


Financial News (4)

Romanian banks solved 83% of payment suspension applications

In the two months since the beginning of the pandemic crisis, Romanian banks have solved 83% of the approximately 317,000 payment suspension applications received from retail and corporate clients, according to the Romanian Banking Association (ARB). Of the total figure, 265,000 applications were filed under Decree 37.


BNR bought state bonds worth RON 3.1 billion

The National Bank of Romania (BNR) has thrown an average of RON 16 billion on the market every day, since April 1, including repo auctions (RON 13 billion) and the acquisition of state bonds on the secondary market (RON 3.1 billion), according to Governor Mugur Isarescu.


Agriculture loans up 13% in March

The insurance and financial intermediation sector posted a 16% increase in the value of loans granted to clients in March, 2020, compared to the corresponding month of 2019, according to the National Bank of Romania (BNR).


ING pushes house down payment up to 35%

Last week, ING Bank increased to 35% the down payment demanded from retail clients looking for mortgages and housing loans, up from 15%. The bank claims that this is a temporary measure, which will be revised every month. Other lenders are considering similar actions in the near future.


Legislative News (1)

President signs bill allowing parents to take family leave

President Klaus Iohannis signed on Monday the bill allowing parents to take family leave in order to supervise their children in the period between the end of the state of emergency and the end of the school year.


Politics (2)

Ciolacu to Orban: "It's this same Parliament that will bring you down, through a motion of censure!"

Marcel Ciolacu, interim leader of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), told Prime Minister Ludovic Orban on Monday: "It's this same Parliament that will bring you down, through a motion of censure!" The statement was made during a debate where Ciolacu accused the Cabinet of incompetence.


Ludovic Orban, to the Parliament: "What can be made in Romania, must be made in Romania"

The Cabinet's economic recovery plan is based on stimulating the local production of those goods that are currently being imported, despite the fact that the country has the raw materials needed to produce them. "What can be made in Romania must be made in Romania, and the Cabinet must be every investor's partner," Prime Minister Ludovic Orban told Parliament on Monday.


Social (1)

Firea: More than 20,000 Bucharest residents will be tested

Bucharest Mayor Gabriela Firea announced that the two projects for testing the city's residents for the new coronavirus will begin soon. More than 20,000 residents will be tested. The City Hall has already signed partnerships with licensed laboratories.