Daily Newsletter - 3 April 2017


Macroeconomic News (5)

ANRE to slash natural gas price 

Despite the upcoming deregulation of the natural gas market, the National Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE) has decided to slash the prices that the two major providers, E.ON Energie Romania and Engie Romania, charge their 1.5 million household clients.


Country report 

The decision to sacrifice investment spending in the first two months of this year has revived the debate surrounding the European Commission's Country Report for 2017. Thus, the national wealth should be based on a healthy and educated workforce and sound investment projects.


Grape harvest down 62,000 tons in 2016 

The production of cereals, potatoes and oil plants increased last year, while the production of sugar beet and vegetables dropped. The grape harvest was 7.8% lower in 2016, compared to 2015, according to the National Statistics Institute (INS).


Increasingly weaker state with bigger and bigger obligations: temporary budget micro-surplus, briefly explained 

The general consolidated budget ended the first two months of 2017 with a 0.05% micro-surplus of the estimated GDP for the current year, according to the data released by the Ministry of Finance. Compared to the same period of the last year, budget revenues declined by almost EUR 500 million and the expenses decreased by about EUR 100 million.


GDP of three Romanian regions below 50% of EU average 

The GDP per capita reported by Romania's North-East, South-East Oltenia and South Muntenia regions is less than 50% of the EU average, according to data released on Thursday by the Eurostat. North-East is one of the poorest regions in the EU, along with Severozapaden (Bulgaria - 29%), Mayotte (France - 32%) and Severen tsentralen and Yuzhen Tsentralen (Bulgaria - 33%).


Financial News (4)

High interest rates are coming back 

The interest rates charged and paid for bank loans and deposits stood at the lowest point of the past 27 years at the beginning of this year. Interest rates have been falling for eight consecutive years. However, 2017 is expected to bring about a reversal of this trend.


Is Banca Transilvania preparing a surprise? 

Banca Transilvania, the most traded company listed in Bucharest, will spend 19% of its earnings on dividends, compared to last year's 50%. Intercapital analyst Ronnie Khreis said the bank is probably planning to use the money for a new acquisition.


15 baks interested in lending to farmers 

15 banks are interested in lending to farmers at a maximum interest rate of 2% above the ROBOR in order to finance the acquisition of up to 250 hectares of farmland. The farmers must be backed by the state and receive subsidies, according to the Minister of Agriculture.


Central European banks will continue to do better than Western European banks 

The earnings of Central European banks, including those operating in Romania, will continue to grow faster than those Western European banks in the next two years, thanks to the improving quality of their loan portfolios.


Investment News (2)

Minister of Development signed three contracts 

The Minister of Development, Sevil Shhaideh, signed on Friday three financing contracts for projects involving RON 500 million in EU funding. The three contracts are the first step toward bringing EUR 5.2 billion in EU funds to Romania.


Arctic announced RON 471 million investment project 

Home appliances manufacturer Arctic has announced a greenfield investment project worth RON 471 million. The company will build a washing machine plant in the Dambovita county. Hakan Bulgurlu, CEO Arcelik, said that Arctic wants to build a production hub in Romania for the European market.


Legislative News (1)

Green certificates to be valid until 2032 

The Cabinet approved, at the Ministry of Energy's proposal, a decree amending Law 220/2008 regarding the renewable energy legislation. Green certificates will be valid until 2032, instead of the current validity period of 12 months, and the mandatory quota will be replaced by a new system.