Daily Newsletter - 25 January 2021


Macroeconomic News (2)

Economy recovers in January

Economic activity recovered quickly in the first two weeks of January, after the seasonal decline experienced during the holidays, according to a report from BCR Cercetare. The bank's analysts highlighted the inflows of funds and, more precisely, the fact that non-resident investors are increasing their share of RON-denominated government bonds (20.1% in November, compared to 19.5% in October).


49.4% of companies expect higher turnovers this year

49.4% of local companies expect their turnovers to increase this year, according to the results of the survey conducted at EY Romania's Annual Taxation Conference 2021. The process of digitizing the state's institutions, which will facilitate fiscal inspections, will continue this year, according to the president of ANAF, Mirela Calugareanu, the special guest of the Conference.


Financial News (3)

MFP borrowed RON 90 million from banks

On Friday, the Ministry of Finance borrowed RON 90 million from the commercial banks, in addition to Thursday's auction, when it borrowed RON 1.547 billion, at an interest rate of 2.38% per year, through a benchmark government bond issue, with a residual maturity of 65 months, according to data published by the National Bank of Romania (BNR). The nominal value of the additional issue was RON 90 million, while the banks submitted bids worth RON 220 million.


Banks' profit margins down in November

The average interest rate on new, RON-denominated retail loans ranged between 6.67% and 8.05% in the first 11 months of last year. For deposits, the average rate ranged between 1.51% and 1.93%. The interest rate for consumer loans dropped below 10%, while the interest rate for mortgages fell to 5.15%.


Number of people withdrawing cash from ATMs down 30 pp in 5 years

The percentage of people who withdraw cash from ATMs has decreased by 30 percentage points compared over the past five years, while two out of three Romanians (67%) use banking products and services of any kind, such as current accounts, cards, loans, deposits and payments, according to a study conducted by the Romanian Institute for Evaluation and Strategy (IRES) and commissioned by the Romanian Banking Association (ARB).


Investment News (2)

Foreign retail chains continue to invest in Romanian supermarkets

Modern commerce players are preparing to open about 400 new stores in 2021, at a cost of EUR 700-800 million worth of investments in expansion, modernization and logistics, according to ZF estimates based on data provided by retailers. "The investment budget for this year is higher than in 2020, approaching EUR 100 million," said Daniel Gross, CEO of German discounter Penny.


22 water projects financed from 2014-2020 budget

22 new projects for expanding water and wastewater networks have been signed so far under the Major Infrastructure Operational Program (POIM), worth a total of EUR 4.44 billion, with funding coming from the European Union's 2014-2020 budget. The project will provide quality drinking water to more than 2.84 million citizens.


Legislative News (2)

Minister of Agriculture wants new lease regulations

"By the end of the year, I would like to have a lease law under which the owner is the beneficiary of a fair lease, and the one who works the land is the sole beneficiary of subsidies," said the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Adrian Oros. The minister added that the Agricultural Chambers and an actual database for livestock must be completed, these being "urgent, annoying, but necessary", which must be addressed this year.


Education Ministry preparing school decree

The Ministry of Education will propose a decree regarding the recovery of the ground lost by students because of online teaching. Students will have to attend 5 hours a week for 16 weeks in person, according to the Minister of Education, Sorin Campeanu. Teachers would be paid RON 100 for each hour they work with the students.


Politics (2)

PM issued unity message

Prime Minister Florin Catu issued on Sunday an official message on the 162th anniversary of the Union of Romanian Principalities. The PM called on the nation to unite in order to help the economy recover.


Marcel Ciolacu: Unity and solidarity make all of us stronger

PSD leader Marcel Ciolacu issued a message on Sunday, on the occasion of the 162nd anniversary of the Union of Romanian Principalities. Ciolacu said that Romanians have gone through difficult times, but overcame them through unity.


Social (1)

Romania ranks 16th in vaccination index

Romanian doctors administered 418,885 shots of COVID-19 vaccine, out of the more than 63 million shots administered in 56 countries, according to Bloomberg data. Romania ranks 16th in the world, based on the number of shots per 100 residents.