Daily Newsletter - 7 February 2019


Macroeconomic News (3)

Defense spending reached 1.3% of GDP last year

The government allocated 2% of the GDP for defense purposes in 2018, but the funds were not spent. Appropriations for endowment investment did not turn into actual expenditures. Defense spending totaled RON 12.1 billion in 2018, equivalent to 1.28% of GDP and far from the 2% promised by the Cabinet, according to the preliminary budget report for last year.


ANRE order to reduce state revenues

Fondul Proprietatea expressed its deep concern about the very damaging impact on companies and investments in the energy sector, on the energy security of Romania and, ultimately, on consumers arising from the Order published by the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE) for the approval of the Pricing methodology for electricity sold by producers under regulated contracts.


Consumption growth rate falls

Consumption slowed down sharply in 2018, while the 5.4% growth rate of the retail sector's turnover is half of last year's, according to ZF calculations based on INS data. 2018 is the weakest year for consumption in the last five years.


Financial News (3)

Lucian Croitoru, BNR governor adviser: "I see no reason why the ROBOR calculation method should change"

The National Bank of Romania (BNR) rejected the Government's proposal to recalculate the ROBOR rate. Thus, "it will take some time until a solution is reached" in the dispute over the new tax on financial assets imposed by Decree 114. BNR adviser Lucian Croitoru considers the ROBOR recalculation to be unnecessary.


Interest rates fall

The interest rates paid and charged by the banks on deposits and loans declined in the last month of 2018, amid excess liquidity, according to BNR data. 2018 was marked by an increase in interest rates, especially for loans, while depositors continued to be paid interest rates rates below the inflation rate.


UniCredit Bank wins award

UniCredit Bank was named by Global Finance magazine the best Private Banking bank in Romania, while UniCredit was awarded the Best Private Bank 2019 for Central and Eastern Europe award. The ceremony took place in New York on Tuesday evening.


Investment News (1)

CTP builds Opsan plant and Arctic warehouse

CTP, developer of logistics and industrial facilities, will soon finish the construction of the Opsan plant near Pitesti and has also erected a 20,000 square meter warehouse for appliance manufacturer Arctic. "The surface of CTPark Piteşti is about 70,000 square meters. The building next to Opsan is already leased to the Arctic," said CTP representatives.


Legislative News (2)

BNR given power to fine service providers

The Parliament has passed a bill giving the National Bank of Romania (BNR) the right to issue fines of up to RON 1 million and even to suspend the providing of services for failing to observe the inter-bank fee caps. BNR was designated the authority responsible for ensuring the observance of EU regulations by service providers.


Senate allows post-natal training bill to pass

The Senate allowed the undisputed passing of a bill making post-natal training mandatory for parents and legal guardians. The purpose of the bill is to reduce the risk of child death.


Politics (2)

Dan Barna: PSD trying to block "No Criminals" initiative

Dan Barna, President of the Save Romania Union (USR), accused PSD's Catalin Radulescu and Florin Iordache of trying to block the "No Criminals" initiative by calling in the prosecutors. According to Barna, the decision shows "how desperate are the criminals who lead the Chamber of Deputies".


PM Dancila in new work trip to Brussels

Prime Minister Viorica Dancila will be in Brussels on February 6 and 7 for a work visit. The main purpose of the trip is to present the priorities of the Romanian presidency at the plenary meeting of the Committee of Regions, which will be held on Wednesday.