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Daily Newsletter - 7 October 2020

Summary

Macroeconomic News (3)

Government borrows RON 500 million at falling rates

The Ministry of Finance sold RON 500 million worth of bonds maturing in 2028 at a lower interest rate than before, despite the fact that demand was not particularly high. On the other hand, the interest rates paid by Romania to finance its public debt remain higher than those paid by neighboring countries. BCR experts say these interest rates are not sustainable, which will lead to unpopular measures after the election, regardless of who wins.

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Ten agriculture priorities for next seven years

The Minister of Agriculture, Adrian Oros, stated at the Agriculture Reloaded videoconference, which was held yesterday, that the authorities had identified ten major priorities in agriculture, which will have to be turned into a national strategic program and addressed over the next seven years.

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"2020 was going to be the best year for Romanian tourism"

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the HoReCa industry at a time when more and more hospitality facilities were being developed, while the number of guests was rising. In 2020, the local hotels, pensions and camping sites had to rely almost exclusively on local tourists. Normally, 2.7 million foreign tourists come to Romania for business or leisure.

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Financial News (2)

BRD starts granting New House loans

BRD GSG has started issuing loans under the New House program. The bank has a guarantee cap that allows it to grant loans worth a total of RON 500 million. Each loan is capped at the national currency equivalent of EUR 66,500 with no down payment, at EUR 70,000 with a 5% down payment, and EUR 119,000 with a 15% down payment.

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Best New House offers

Although 15 banks have joined the New Home program, only a few of them have actually started to grant such mortgages. Because they are partially regulated by the state, the lending terms offered by the various banks participating in the government program are, in fact, quite similar. The value of the effective annual interest rate for a loan worth RON 243,700 (the equivalent of approximately EUR 50,000), maturing in 30 years, varies around 5%.

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Investment News (2)

Index of top foreign investors in Romania

Germany, not the Netherlands, is the source of the largest flows of foreign direct investment (FDI) attracted by Romania in the last three decades, according to an analysis conducted for the first time by the National Bank of Romania (BNR). BNR's purpose was to identify the final investors, respectively the entity located on the "upper level of the property chain and which is not controlled by any other entity", investors who often choose investment targets for fiscal reasons.

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MOL invested USD 200 million in Romania in 25 years

Hungarian group MOL announced that it had invested approximately USD 200 million in Romania over its 25 years of operations in the country, not including the cost of buying the local Shell and Agip gas stations. The company's strategy focuses on digitization, development and diversification.

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Legislative News (2)

Markup law to be abrogated

After USR and PSD proposed the elimination of stipulations forcing companies to declare their markups and fees to the fiscal authorities, the markup law will be fully abrogated, according to a bill adopted by the Parliament on Tuesday.

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Chamber passed bill banning sale of products of unknown provenance

The Chamber of Deputies passed yesterday a bill banning the selling of products that fail to meet the requirements set by the national regulations or whose provenance cannot be documented. The fines range between RON 2,000 and 20,000.

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Politics (2)

Ciolacu discussed council alliance with Popescu

Marcel Ciolacu, President of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), met yesterday with Cristian Popescu Piedone, mayor elect of Bucharest's Fifth District, in order to discuss an alliance in the district council. Ciolacu said that Piedone would not be joining the PSD, since he is already member of another party.

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USR attacks PNL over judiciary bills

Deputy Stelian Ion, a member of the National Committee of the Save Romania Union (USR), accused the National Liberal Party (PNL) of skirting the problem of amending the judiciary regulations by putting forward verbose proposals, without any consultation, and kicking the can down the road until after the election.

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Social (2)

60% of Romanian employees say they work under pressure

Almost 60% of Romanian employees said they work under pressure, compared to an EU average of 67%, according to the Eurostat data valid for 2019. In Romania, 6% of employees say they are always affected by the pressure of deadlines, while 52.2% said they feel this pressure often or sometimes.

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New restrictions imposed in Bucharest

Restaurants, cafes, cinemas and all theaters in Bucharest will close for at least seven days, as the incidence threshold of 1.5 per 1,000 inhabitants has been exceeded, according to the official announcement made by the Bucharest Prefect, Gheorghe Cojanu, on Tuesday evening.

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