Economic newsletter of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Romania

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The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Bucharest publishes a monthly economic newsletter, distributed by e-mail. The material published in this newsletter is compiled by the staff in the Economic and Agriculture section on the basis of publicly available information, from various sources (Agerpres news bulletins, National Institute for Statistics, Nine O’Clock, Capital, Ziarul Financiar, Business Review) and reflects the developments of the month. It does not represent the opinion of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands or any other official body. No responsibility for factual accuracy can be taken.

Macroeconomics & Business environment

EUR/USD exchange rates against RON

Average January 2014 exchange rates were:

 

1 EUR = 4.5219 RON
1 USD = 3.3206 RON

Source: National Bank of Romania (www.bnr.ro)

Nationwide unemployment rate at 7.1% at end-2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, in December 2013, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was estimated at 7.1%, decreasing with 0.2 percentage points as compared to the previous month, and increasing with 0.4 percentage points as against the level recorded in December 2012.

Average earnings in December 2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, In December 2013, the average gross nominal earnings were 2430 lei, by 6.7% higher than the one registered in November 2013. The average net nominal earnings were 1760 lei, increasing as against the previous month with 110 lei (6.7%).

Consumer Price Index in Janaury 2014 and year 2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) in January 2014 was 100.85% compared to December 2013 and 101.06% compared to January 2013. The overall average price increase determined on the basis of the CPI was 3.6% in the last 12 months (February 2013 – January 2014) compared to the previous 12 months (February 2012 – January 2013).

Gross Domestic Product in the fourth quarter of 2013

According to the first estimates of the National Statistics Institute, the Romanian Gross Domestic Product in Q4 2013 was, in real terms, by 1.7% higher as compared to Q3 2013 (seasonally adjusted data). As against the same quarter of 2012, the Gross Domestic Product recorded an increase by 5.2% for the unadjusted series and by 5.1% for the seasonally adjusted series. In 2013, as compared to 2012, Gross Domestic Product increased by 3.5%.

BNR Board decides to cut rate of monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year

The Board of the National Bank of Romania (BNR) on February 4 decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year, from 3.75 percent, starting on February 5, 2014, said the central bank in a press release. According to the above-mentioned source, in the meeting of February 4, 2014, the BNR Board also decided to maintain the current levels of the rates of the mandatory minimum reserves to be applied to the liabilities in lei and foreign currency of the lending institutions and to properly manage the liquidity of the banking system. The BNR Board also examined and approved the quarterly report on inflation, a document that will be presented in a news conference to be organized on February 6, 2014. Since last summer BNR has decided five times to cut the key interest. Thus, the BNR Board in early July 2013 decided to cut the key interest to 5 percent from 5.25 percent a year and in August to 4.5 percent from 5 percent a year. Another two cuts of the monetary policy interest, by 0.25 percentage points each, were decided on in September and November, thus the key interest amounted to 4 percent. On January 8, 2014, the BNR Board decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.75 percent from 4 percent a year, starting on January 9, 2014.

BNR Board decides to cut rate of monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year

The Board of the National Bank of Romania (BNR) on February 4 decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year, from 3.75 percent, starting on February 5, 2014, said the central bank in a press release. According to the above-mentioned source, in the meeting of February 4, 2014, the BNR Board also decided to maintain the current levels of the rates of the mandatory minimum reserves to be applied to the liabilities in lei and foreign currency of the lending institutions and to properly manage the liquidity of the banking system. The BNR Board also examined and approved the quarterly report on inflation, a document that will be presented in a news conference to be organized on February 6, 2014. Since last summer BNR has decided five times to cut the key interest. Thus, the BNR Board in early July 2013 decided to cut the key interest to 5 percent from 5.25 percent a year and in August to 4.5 percent from 5 percent a year. Another two cuts of the monetary policy interest, by 0.25 percentage points each, were decided on in September and November, thus the key interest amounted to 4 percent. On January 8, 2014, the BNR Board decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.75 percent from 4 percent a year, starting on January 9, 2014.

Romania sets 2019 as new Euro adoption deadline

Romania’s government expects the country will meet this year all the Maastricht criteria to converge to the euro area and set the year 2019 as a self-imposed deadline for the euro adoption. “In 2014, Romania meets all the euro convergence criteria: the annual inflation rate, the yield on government bonds, a stable exchange rate, a budget deficit below 3% of the gross domestic product and a public debt level below 60% of GDP,” the government said in a presentation of the 2013 economic indicators and the targets for 2014-2015. “We are on track regarding the real convergence.” Romania had hoped to join the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) II as of 2013 and converge to the eurozone two years later, but economic and financial difficulties both at home and in EU have made the target obsolete. Source: www.zfenglish.com

IMF and EC Staff Visit January 21-February 4, 2014

Teams from the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission visited Bucharest during January 21-February 4 to conduct discussions on the combined first and second reviews under the IMF Stand-By Agreement (SBA) and on the status of Romania’s precautionary balance of payments program with the European Union. Staff level agreement has been reached. The program remains broadly on track. Most end-December performance criteria were met and structural benchmarks have either been met or are nearing completion. More info is available at https://www.fmi.ro/index.php?pid=269&lg=en&presa.

The international trade of goods in December and the year 2013

December 2013

In December 2013, according to preliminary estimations of the National Institute of Statistics, FOB exports amounted to 17189.2million lei (3857.0 million euro) and CIF imports amounted to 19399.3 million lei (4351.5 million euro). Compared to December 2012, exports increased by 21.2% at values expressed in lei (22.5% at values expressed in euro) and imports increased by 7.0% at values expressed in lei (8.1% at values expressed in euro). Compared to November 2013, in December 2013, exports decreased by 14.5% at values expressed in lei (14.7% at values expressed in euro) and imports decreased by 11.2% at values expressed in lei (11.5% at values expressed in euro). In December 2013, the FOB-CIF commercial deficit was of 2210.1 million lei (494.5 million euro), 1734.0 million lei (382.7 million euro) less than in December 2012.

Year 2013

In the year 2013, FOB exports amounted to 219121.6 million lei (49562.6 million euro) and CIF imports amounted to 244334.7 million lei (55264.5 million euro). Compared to the year 2012, exports increased by 9.1% at values expressed in lei (10.0% at values expressed in euro) and imports increased by 0.2% at values expressed in lei (1.0% at values expressed in euro). In the year 2013, the FOB-CIF commercial deficit was of 25213.1 million lei (5701.9 million euro), 17774.9 million lei (3932.4 million euro) less than in the year 2012. In the year 2013, the Intra-community trade of goods (Intra EU28) amounted to 152503.4 million lei (34505.4 million euro) for dispatches and to 185013.9 million lei (41861.2 million euro) for arrivals, representing 69.6% of the total exports and 75.7% of the total imports. In the year 2013, the Extra-community trade of goods (Extra EU28) amounted to 66618.2 million lei (15057.2 million euro) for exports and to 59320.8 million lei (13403.3 million euro) for imports, representing 30.4% of the total exports and 24.3% of the total imports.

Amendments to the Banking Ordinance

In brief

GEO no. 113/2013 on budgetary measures, amending and supplementing GEO no. 99/2006 on credit institutions and capital adequacy, was published in the Official Gazette no. 830 dated 23 December 2013. This GEO brings a considerable number of changes to GEO no. 99/2006 on credit institutions and capital adequacy (“Banking Ordinance”). These changes are mainly aimed at strengthening the supervision capacity of the National Bank of Romania (“NBR”).

In detail

Credit institutions are required to draft recovery plans to restore their financial situation following a significant deterioration thereof; The activity of issuing electronic money is included in the category of activities that can be provided in Romania under the “European passport” – by credit institutions from Member States, as well as by Romanian credit institutions Romania, outside the country; In cases of emergency, the National Bank of Romania (“NBR”) is entitled to take the necessary preventive measures with regard to credit institutions from other Member States that perform activities in Romania, with a view to ensuring protection against financial instability; The obligation of credit institution managers to exercise exclusively the function for which they were appointed has been removed. Directors and managers have the right to carry out more mandates simultaneously, according to specific individual circumstances and with the approval of the NBR; In the event that violations of the law are found, financial auditors are required to pass the information not only to the NBR, but also to the directors and managers of the credit institution concerned; The NBR has new responsibilities, such as: – Conducting crisis tests regarding supervised credit institutions, at least annually; – Verification of compliance by credit institutions with the internal approaches requirements, at least every three years; – Establishing a schedule of prudential supervision of credit institutions, at least annually; The text provides the conditions under which the NBR can provide information regarding the prudential supervision of credit institutions to the investigation committees of Parliament, the Court of Auditors and other Romanian entities with powers of investigation; The text provides the specific circumstances depending on which the individualisation of sanctions and sanctioning measures taken by the NBR against credit institutions are be made; A public warning sanction is introduced which indicates the person responsible and the act which was committed; The limits of certain sanctions have been increased considerably: the fine imposed on legal persons, of up to 10% of the total net turnover of the previous financial year; the fine imposed on individuals of up to EUR 5 million. The possibility of applying fines that amount to up to twice the value of the benefit obtained by committing the act, if such facts can be determined, has also been introduced; The NBR is to establish mechanisms to protect financial institution employees who report violations by credit institutions and guarantee their privacy and confidentiality. The provisions amending the Banking Ordinance entered into force as of 1 January 2014, except for certain provisions regarding liquidity requirements. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 830 dated 23 December 2013.

The takeaway

Directors and managers have the right to carry out more mandates simultaneously, according to specific individual circumstances and with the approval of the NBR. The limits of certain sanctions have been increased considerably: up to 10% of the total net turnover (for legal persons) and up to EUR 5 million (for individuals). Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Amendments brought to the Fiscal code and other legislative acts

Government Emergency Ordinance no. 111/2013 regulating fiscal measures and amending legislative acts („the Ordinance”) was published on 19 December 2013 and enters into force as of 1 January 2014. The major changes are summarised below:  Cash accounting VAT scheme • The application of the cash accounting VAT scheme becomes optional and the collection of output VAT and deduction of input VAT are performed within the VAT return related to the month when the cashing/payment of the invoice occurred. • Transition from the mandatory application of the cash accounting VAT scheme to the optional one is covered by transitory rules. Excise duties
• The increase of the excise duties level for diesel, leaded and unleaded petrol and kerosene is postponed from 1 January 2014 to 1 April 2014. The Law no. 148/2012 regarding the recording of commercial transactions through electronic means, previously suspended, is abrogated. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 809/2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Releasing guarantees provided by authorised warehousekeepers

The Ministry of Finance published Order no. 1920/2013 on 3 December 2013 providing the procedure for updating guarantees in line with Article 206^54 paragraph (4^2) of Law no. 571 / 2003 regarding the Fiscal Code. In this respect, authorised warehousekeepers who have previously lodged a guarantee for more than the maximum threshold provided by the law may request the partial release of that guarantee by 5 December. Entry into force: 3 December 2013. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 748/ 3 December 2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Minimum wage levels for 2014

Government Decision no.871 / 2013 on the guaranteed gross minimum wage was published on 15 November 2013. The Decision sets a minimum wage of RON 850 per month for a full-time work schedule of 168 hours per month. This wage level applies during the period 1 January 2014 – 30 June 2014. As of 1 July 2014, the gross minimum wage will be increased to RON 900 per month for a full-time work schedule of 168 hours. Setting a salary below these levels by means of an individual labour contract will be considered an offence and sanctioned with a fine of between RON 1,000 to RON 2,000. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 703 / 15 November 2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Foreign investment at the end of December 2013

According to the data published by the National Office of the Trade Registry, at the end of December 2013, there were 192,416 companies registered in Romania with foreign participation in social capital, total foreign investment amounting to EUR 37.7 billion. The top of the first five foreign investors was led by the Netherlands, with 4,441 companies registered and total invested capital of EUR 7.3 billion, followed by Austria with 6,677 companies and a total investment of EUR 4.93 billion, Germany with 20,146 companies and a total investment of EUR 4.4, Cyprus with 5,403 registered companies and a total investment reaching EUR 2.4 billion, and France with 7,616 companies and an investment of EUR 2.1 billion.

The Netherlands – first investor in Romania, with over 7 billion euros

Foreign Affairs Minister Titus Corlatean on January 27 said that the Romanian authorities would make efforts for consolidating the position of first investor The Neterlands had in relation with Romania. “I pointed out the Romanian side’s interest in consolidating the position of first investor Holland has in relation with Romania. (…) At present, The Neterlands has a total investment capital worth over 7 billion euros and this represents over 20 percent of the total foreign investments in our country, with approximately 4,500 Dutch companies active in Romania. We plan to reduce the trade balance deficit, in the conditions in which last year, included, we find an increase in the economic trade exchanges, an increase of the Romanian exports, included,” Titus Corlatean said at the end of the talks with his Dutch counterpart Franz Timmermans, who is paying an official visit to Bucharest. The Dutch diplomacy head is paying an official visit to Bucharest, at the invitation of his Romanian counterpart Titus Corlatean.

Timmermans: Constanta Port could cooperate with Rotterdam Port to learn from its experience

The Constanta Port (southeastern Romania) could have the opportunity to learn from the Dutch experience in what ports are concerned, under a cooperation programme with the Dutch Port of Rotterdam, the Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, Frans Timmermans, told a press conference held together with his Romanian counterpart, Titus Corlatean. Asked what were the Netherlands’s intentions with respect to the Constanta Port, in case it gets privatised or it introduces a private management scheme, Minister Timmermans replied: “We have quite a lot of experience when it comes to ports, especially when it comes to the Rotterdam Port[…] Which is a huge port, since it’s also the main port of Germany and not only of the Netherlands’s. This port can be described as a success mainly due to its infrastructure and logistics and also due to the fact that it is managed in a diligent and open way. However, regardless of what the Romanian authorities will decide related to the future of the Constanta Port, it does not depend on us. It depends on the Romanian authorities,”. The head of the Dutch diplomacy also added that Romania and the Netherlands could become suppliers “of logistics for the entire Europe” and that, in his opinion, “it will be good that Rotterdam and Constanta ports continue to cooperate.”

Dr. Oetker Buys Land Plot For New Plant Near Curtea de Arges

Dr. Oetker, the biggest player on Romanian food additive market, is set to build a new plant in Valea Iasului locality of Arges county, after it bought a 14-ha land plot located near its current production unit. Investments are likely to go beyond EUR15 million. Dr. Oetker paid EUR1.8 million for the land plot owned by Valea Iasului mayoralty, according to information provided by Nicolae Barbu, mayor of the locality where the German-held group’s plant is located. Barbu says Dr. Oetker officials stated they would invest EUR15-20 million to build a new production unit, but for the time being the German group has not sent any construction project for authorization to the mayoralty.

The representatives of Dr. Oetker Ro, the Romanian subsidiary of the German group, did not answer ZF’s request for information by edition close. The company’s expansion comes as a rising number of companies have in recent years decided to close down production units. Dr. Oetker is the biggest tax payer in Valea Iasului, bringing around 1.5 million lei (EUR340,000) to the locality’s budget, namely around 65% of the total. The food additive plant currently employs some 350 people. The new plant is likely to double current production and create 200-250 new jobs, according to Nicolae Barbu’s estimates. Dr. Oetker, with EUR55 million in revenue in 2012 (the latest data available), is among the 20 largest companies in Arges county, with Automobile Dacia holding the leading position in the ranking, according to Trade Registry data. Source: www.zfenglish.com

SOCAR invests nearly EUR 1 million in its first filling station in Bucharest

The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic SOCAR has invested approximately one million euros in its first gas station opened in the Romanian capital city, at Chiajna, along the city belt. The gas station in Bucharest is the 25th opened by SOCAR in Romania. SOCAR Romania is the representative of the oil and natural gas company owned by the state of Azerbaijan (The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic), one of the world’s leading oil and natural gas companies. SOCAR invests billions of US dollars annually in transport infrastructure, while being part of key European projects, meant to increase energy security in Europe by diversifying the natural gas reserves. The company entered the Romanian market in 2011, by establishing the SOCAR Petroleum and by creating and consolidating a network of filling stations located all over the country. So far, the company created more than 320 jobs in Romania and carried out investments worth in excess of 50 million euros.

Lukoil to build 9 MW solar park in Romania

Lukoil Energy&Gas Romania, a unit of Russia’s second-largest oil group Lukoil, plans to build a 9 MW photovoltaic park near its Petrotel refinery in the southern city of Ploiesti, people familiar with the matter told Mediafax. The project is estimated to cost around EUR13.5 million. Lukoil secured the construction license for the project at the end of 2013. Lukoil officials said last year they were considering building solar power parks on land near the refinery in Ploiesti. At that time, they said they were aiming for an installed power of up to 12 MW. Apart from the refinery in Ploiesti, Lukoil operates a network of 300 gas stations in Romania. Solar power projects under construction in Romania currently add up to around 1,000 MW.

EU funds & International financing organisations in Romania

EBRD grants EUR 11.8 million loan for water and sewage works in southern Romania

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will lend EUR11.8 million to water utility Apa Canal 2000 to co-finance upgrades on water and sewage systems in Arges county, Romania. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will lend EUR11.8 million to water utility Apa Canal 2000 to co-finance upgrades on water and sewage systems in Arges county, Romania. The loan will co-finance a regional investment program for water supply and wastewater facilities and networks under EU Cohesion Fund financing for Romania. This loan is the 21st investment under the EBRD’s Romania EU Cohesion Funds Water Co-Financing Framework, launched in 2010. The facility was originally approved in November 2010, with a volume of EUR 200 million, and further increased by EUR 130 million in September 2012, following strong local demand. To date, the EBRD has mobilized approximately EUR2 billion of EU funding in Romania’s water and wastewater facilities. Since the start of its operations in the country the EBRD has invested approximately EUR6.4 billion across over 343 projects in Romania and has further mobilized over EUR 14 billion for these ventures from other sources of financing.

Transport infrastructure and environment are Romania’s main targets for EU funds

The transport infrastructure and the environment are the areas where Romania intends to direct the greatest part of structural and cohesion funds during the 2014-2020 financial years. “The way that Romania plans to use the structural and cohesion funds allocated [by the European Union] to our country is vital for sustaining a development concept,” Prime Minister Victor Ponta said on February 4 at Victoria Palace, at the end of a meeting of the Interinstitutional Committee for the 2014-2020 Partnership Agreement. According to him, the Government will propose the European Commission to allocate 5.7 billion euros for the road, railway, water, and air transportation infrastructure; 3 billion euros for environment projects; 270 million euros for energy efficiency; 1 billion euros for the employment of youth and unemployed people; 1 billion euros for social assistance, especially to the Roma minority; 1 billion euros for education and training programmes, plus 350 million euros for the educational infrastructure. The medical structure should receive European funds amounting to 500 million euros, which would allow building three regional hospitals. Victor Ponta also announced that 520 million euros is to be directed to programmes for the enhancement of local administrative capacity, and 300 million euros to the central technical support; 800 million euros should be allocated to projects for the small and medium enterprises and technology parks; 2.8 billion euros to urban development; 700 million euros to research; and 1.1 billion euros to projects concerning county roads and beltways. The IT sector might receive funds amounting to 550 million euros, while 450 million euros could be allocated to projects related to historical, cultural and tourist areas. The Minister of EU Funds Eugen Teodorovici specified that these sums are only Romania’s proposals to be submitted to the European Commission; they will be further analysed in Brussels and negotiated with the Romanian counterpart.

EIB providing BCR Leasing EUR 15 million for SMEs, public entities

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing a EUR 15 million loan to BCR Leasing to finance small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), midcap companies and public entities in Romania implementing projects in industry, services and infrastructure, EIB reported on February 13. “EIB funds will be on-lent with the help of a new EIB intermediary – BCR Leasing – in order to facilitate the access of SMEs, midcap companies and municipalities to long-term finance. The new facility will strengthen the EIB’s support to SMEs and midcaps and foster their competitiveness and productivity. Given that they represent the engine of the Romanian economy the operation will have a positive impact on economic growth prospects and job creation,” says Mihai Tanasescu, EIB Vice-President with responsibility for Romania. This is a first tranche from a total credit line of EUR 75 million agreed with the EIB. This loan is in line with the EIB’s priority to support Europe’s SMEs, particularly in the difficult current economic environment. To this end, the EIB is joining forces with well-established financing institutions, like BCR Leasing, that know the local market and have SMEs, midcap companies and public entities as their customers. BCR Leasing IFN S.A., part of the BCR Group which is majority-owned by the Erste Group, operates in in the area of financial leasing for the procurement of industrial vehicles and equipment, agricultural equipment, medical equipment, software and IT equipment.

Energy

Romania’s renewable energy capacity surges 82% in 2013

The production of renewable energy in Romania reached record levels at the end of last year, when the overall capacity of existing projects in the energy system attained 4,255 MW, a 82% increase compared to the end of 2013, according to data of the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE). Namely, on December 31, 2013, wind energy projects totalling 2,503 MW, photovoltaic projects of 1,155 MW, biomass capacities of 65 MW, and hydro power plants amounting to 530 MW were operational. Renewable energy producers get subsidies with green certificates, paid by all the consumers including the households, and highlighted separately on the electricity bills. Romania has committed to reach 24% of renewable energy in its total consumption in 2020, but ANRE has announced that this target has been already reached on January 1, 2014. To curb the surge of bills, on July 1, 2013 the Government decided to postpone the issue of some green certificates until 2017 – 2020. Early in January, President Traian Basescu sent back to the Parliament the Law for the approval of the Government Emergency Order 57/2013. This Law included the provision of delaying the issue of green certificates only for the projects commissioned before January 1, 2014, which was not originally stipulated in the Order text. Therefore, by not signing the Law, the effects of the Order are cumulated with those of the Government Decision of December, and solar power projects now get only one green certificate, the wind power projects only 0.5 certificates, and the micro hydro power plants only 1.3 certificates.

IMF: Gas market for industrial consumers fully liberalized by midyear

The deregulation of the gas market for industrial consumers will be completed by midyear 2014, earlier than expected, the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission in Romania Andrea Schaechter said on Tuesday at the press conference closing her visit to Bucharest. Romania has fulfilled its commitments concerning the deregulation. As regards the electricity, the market has been already deregulated since January 1 for non-household consumers, as planned. For the natural gas, the deregulation will be completed in July, earlier than previously estimated, Schaechter said. According to calendars agreed by the Romanian Government and the IMF in 2012, the electricity market has been fully liberalized on January 1, 2014 for industrial consumers, and for the households the liberalization will be achieved on December 31, 2017. The original schedule for the deregulation of gas had set liberalization for industrial consumers on December 31, 2014; this term has been advanced to July 1, 2014. For the households, prices will be completely liberalized on December 31, 2018. The measures taken by the Government to protect vulnerable consumers have also met the expectations, the head of the IMF mission added.

Environment & water

Romanian-Bulgarian cross-border project to fight floods and water pollution

More than 550,000 people in the Giurgiu (southern Romania) – Ruse (northern Bulgaria) border region will benefit starting on January 24 of a warning system using sirens, and of boats and vehicles for interventions in the event of floods or accidental water pollution, as a Romanian-Bulgarian common project to this effect has been completed. “This ‘Common actions for emergency management in hydrological and weather-related events and in cases of accidental water pollution’ project is the latest in a series of eight projects implemented within the Romanian-Bulgarian Cross-Border Programme, completed today with our Bulgarian partners,” project manager Despina Oprea said at a press conference on January 24. She mentioned that this project has built an efficient warning system, by purchasing and installing horns in Giurgiu County (southern Romania). It also allows generating flood hazard maps in the cross-border Giurgiu-Ruse region. Acquisitions of boats and specific vehicles also resulted in an increased capacity of intervention and rescue. “Now the Ruse firemen are the best equipped in the whole country, as the result of these projects, (…) and the transfrontier collaboration in [the region of] Giurgiu-Ruse has become an example of good practice in this field,” Bulgarian project manager Valentin Krasnaliev declared in Giurgiu on January 24. The closing of the common intervention project in the border region has been also attended by the chief of the Giurgiu Inspectorate for Emergency Situations Emil Apostol, Giurgiu County public administrator Dumitru Beianu and representative of the Danubius Euroregion Lili Ganceva.

Project of EUR 9.3 million for floods management in Prut, Siret upper basins

Almost 42 million lei (9.3 million euros) is allocated for floods management in the upper basins of the Prut and Siret Rivers (east), a project recently launched in Iasi (east), the “Romanian Waters” National Administration /ANAR/ has announced. The project titled “Prevention and Protection against Floods in the Prut and Siret Upper Basins, by Implementing a Modern Monitoring System with Automated Station” (East Avert) – MIS ETC 966, is a cross-border one, between Romania, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova. The total value of the programme is 9.3 million euros, of which 90% are funds provided through the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument through the Joint Operational Programme Romania – Ukraine – Republic of Moldova 2007 – 2013, and 10 % is co-financing provided by the project partners. According to the ANAR, the main expected results of the project East Avert are increasing the effectiveness of the warning/alarm system between the three countries by improving the accuracy of forecasts, both in terms of variations of flows as well as the propagation time of flashflood, improving the response time to emergencies and improving the monitoring of quality parameters. Also stipulated is conducting major investments, such as: rehabilitation works and increasing the monitoring capacity at Stanca Costesti Reservoir, installing 24 automated hydrometric stations on the Ukrainian territory, located in the upper catchment of the Siret and Prut Rivers to determine the quantity parameters and two hydrometric stations at Stanca Costesti Reservoir. Moreover, developed under the project will be six dispatching centres in Romania, managed by the Prut-Barlad and Siret Water Basin Administrations, three dispatching centres in Ukraine (Dniester-Prut and Chernovtsy Hydromet Waters Department) and a dispatching centre in the Republic of Moldova (Moldova Waters Agency). Also, four upgraded basin forecasting centres will be set up, which will apply the same forecasting model.

9.41 million euros SME programme for reducing CO2 emissions

The Romanian small and medium enterprises (SME) that develop programmes for reducing CO2 emission through energy saving will benefit of foreign financing up to 700,000 euros from the “Industrial Energy Efficiency Programme for SMEs.” The overall amount of the programme stands at more than 9.41 million euros; it has been launched at a specialized conference on February 10.

The programme is financed through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area (EAA) carried out by the Ministry of Economy, in its capacity of Programme Operator; its specific goal is to reduce the CO2 footprint by energy saving in the industry and by reducing the greenhouse gas emissions. According to its authors, the “Industrial Energy Efficiency Programme for SMEs” gives priority to the programmes that result in the greatest cuts of the CO2 emissions, based on the financial allocations to the grants programme (tonnes of CO2/1000 euros). The programme amounts to 9,411,765 euros, out of which 8,235,294 euros are EAA funds, and 1,411,765 euros comes from co-financing; this is a grant-type financing. The grant minimum is 200,000 euros per project, and the maximum is 700,000 euros. The estimated application period for projects is between January and April 2014; the programme will be carried out between 2013 and 2016. The Donor States of this programme (Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein) have signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Romania, designating the Ministry of Economy as Programme Operator for the “Energy Efficiency” Programme financed by the EAA Financial Mechanism approved on October 1, 2013. The launching conference of the new financing programme has been held on Monday in Bucharest; it was the first out of four similar events in February, the next ones being those in Cluj-Napoca (central Romania), Timisoara (west), and Iasi (northeast). The European goals, and implicitly Romania’s are to cut down greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20 percent until 2020, on a 1990 basis; to increase the proportion of renewable energy in the European Union’s overall consumption by 20 percent; and to increase energy efficiency by 20 percent.

Agriculture & food      

 

Romania, China could sign new memorandum on export of live sheep, mutton

Agerpres – ROMANIAN ECONOMIC HIGHLIGHTS, February 10 – 16, 2014, No. 7

Romania and China could sign a new memorandum on the export of live sheep and mutton, after other two memoranda on the export of breeding cattle and pork were signed in November of last year. In this respect, the Romanian Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Daniel Constantin on February 12 discussed with the Ambassador of China to Romania, Huo Yuzhen, a number of aspects regarding the Romanian – Chinese cooperation in agriculture. The two officials appreciated the fact that progress has been recorded in terms of the cooperation between the two sides, reminding the fact that several Chinese delegations have been present in Romania lately, with the investors having shown interest in Romania’s cattle, pig and sheep breeding sector, reads a Romanian Agriculture Ministry (MADR) release issued for AGERPRES. According to MADR, thr Agriculture Minister of the Chinese Government, Han Changfu, will pay a visit to Bucharest in early April 2014. “It is a clear signal that Premier Li Keqiang’s visit, which took place in November 2013, is followed by concrete deeds and things occurring in the collaboration between the two states,” said Minister Daniel Constantin. Agriculture Minister Daniel Constantin underscored the interest voiced by the operators in the Romanian agricultural sector for the collaboration with the Chinese side in a number of areas of interest – live cattle and beef products, live sheep and mutton, as well as pork. Also, the minister reminded the intention to sign a new memorandum on live sheep and mutton. Romania has 14 million sheep and the relevant export potential amounts to 4-5 million heads.

AgriMin Constantin: Romania’s agriculture starts to be competitive after 20 years

After 20 years, 2014 is the year when Romania’s agriculture becomes competitive, but to stabilise production massive investments are needed in the irrigation system, Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Daniel Constantin said in Ploiesti (southern Romania) on February 14 in front of over 500 representatives of farmers and local authorities. “Since 1994, Romania hasn’t had any positive [agri-food trade] balance [until last year]. Romania’s agriculture is becoming competitive, and we are starting exporting to third countries – Asia, Arab countries. On the European market we still have very much work to do, but this thing can only be done by supporting the irrigation system,” Constantin said. He added that “if we want to be competitive in the future, besides the other measures established through the National Programme for Rural Development we need to stabilise production at a certain level and invest very much in the irrigation sector, the irrigation sector being the main priority of the current government.” Daniel Constantin said that half of the secondary infrastructure taken over by the irrigation operators’ organisations was plundered, but it would be restored on European funds. “The amounts devoted to the irrigation systems in the secondary infrastructure stand at 370 million euros. The main infrastructure does not benefit from European funds, but we are at an advanced stage of talks for a public-private partnership programme,” said Constantin. He showed that “over the next 2-3 years, we can talk about a massive rehabilitation of the irrigation sector, which will ensure increased competitiveness of the Romanian agriculture.” Almost 1,000 farmers and local authorities, mayors, local councillors participated in meetings with the Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Constantin in Ploiesti and at Valenii de Munte, as part of preparations of the 2014-2020 National Rural Development Programme.

Source: Agerpres – ROMANIAN ECONOMIC HIGHLIGHTS, February 10 – 16, 2014, No. 7

Romania Exports Cold Cuts Worth of EUR100M Annually

Romania’s cold cut exports have registered a nine-fold increase in the past decade, shows a ZF survey based on data provided by the country’s statistics institute INS and European Union’s statistics office Eurostat. Besides salami and sausages, Romania also exports snail meat or Wiener schnitzel. Austrian investor Johann Gierlinger (owner of Convenience Prod), Ioan Popa (Transavia) and the Naghi family (Aldis Calarasi) are the top three exporters of processed meat products in Romania, a market that reached EUR100 million last year. Besides well-known names such as CrisTim, Caroli, Kosarom, Scandia or Reinert, the ranking also includes niche producers such as Rolux or Bioprod, which process snail meat. As a matter of fact, Convenience Prod, leader of this segment, also focuses on ready-to-cook meat products such as schnitzels or cordon bleu, an area tapped to a lesser extent by other players, as sausages and salamis still bring the largest slice of revenue.

Exports cover loan rates

“We operated the first exports 5-6 years ago, after Romania joined the EU. This is a segment that generates euro amounts that help us pay our foreign currency loans without being exposed to forex risks,” explained Neculai Apostol, owner of Kosarom group, a top 20 processed meat exporter. At the time the company took the first steps abroad, processed meat exports of Romanian companies neared EUR40 million and entrepreneurs active in this industry were starting to feel the taste of profit from trucks sent to major economies of Western Europe and to cities and regions with the biggest concentrations of Romanian communities. Domestic processors most firmly tapped European markets considering over 95% of the value of last year exports is in the EU markets. This can also be accounted by Romanian processors’ not having had access so far to key markets outside the EU, such as Russia and China, due to restrictive sanitary rules.

Exports of snail meat of EUR2.7 million

The top of the 10 largest processed meat exporters in 2013 includes Rolux, which owns a snail plant in Hateg city, Hunedoara. The company collected, processed and exported snail meat worth EUR2.7 million last year. “Production goes entirely abroad as Romania lacks a market for such products,” explained Simona Rosu, manager of the company. France is the largest EU market for snail meat and Romanian companies delivered products worth of EUR4 million to this country last year, or 80% of exports along this line. Bioprod Avrig, with revenue of EUR0.6 million/year, also operates on this segment, and is among the top 20 exporters. Though the market of processed meat product exports has posted a ninefold increase in the past decade and hit an all-time high last year, processors’ export figures are still below the market potential. Romania ranks 10th in the EU by meat production, but in the first 11 months of last year ranked as low as 18th in terms of exports of processed meat products. Romanian exporters last year covered 92% of revenue from deliveries inside the EU and sausages made one third of exported products. Source: ZFEnglish Feb 16, 2014

Chamber of Deputies approves request of review of agricultural land sale bill

Bucharest, Feb 18 /Agerpres/ – On February 18, the Chamber of Deputies passed by a vote of 256 to 51 and 20 abstentions the request made by Romania’s President to review the bill on the regulation of purchases of farmland outside the development boundaries by foreigners. According to the bill passed by the deputies, the citizens and legal persons of European Union member states or of signatory states of the Agreement on the European Economic Area, and of the Swiss Confederation can purchase farm land in Romania on a mutual basis. The citizens of other states or the stateless persons residing in other countries, and the legal persons with other states’ nationality can become holders of property rights on farm land outside the development boundaries in accordance with the terms of international treaties, on a mutual basis, as stipulated by this law. ‘The alienation by sale of farm land outside the development boundaries is possible with the observance of the content and form restrictions stipulated in the Civil Code and of the pre-emption rights of co-owners, tenants, neighbouring owners, and of the Romanian State, through the State Domains Agency, in this order, at equal price and on equal terms. Farm land outside the development borders within 30 kilometres from the state border or the Black Sea coast, or within 2400 metres from special objectives can be sold and bought only subject to specific approval by the Ministry of National Defence, issued after consulting the state agencies with responsibilities in national security matters, through its specialized internal structures mentioned in paragraph 6(1) of Law 51/1991 on Romania’s national security with the subsequent amendments,’ the bill also reads. The Chamber of Deputies has the power of decision on this bill previously passed by the Senate.

Brief summary provided by the Netherlands Embassy:

Based on the request of re-examination of the Agricultural Land Sale Law made by the President of Romania, the Parliament approved on February 18 the new final version of the law. The law will be sent to the President for promulgation and then to the Official Gazette of Romania for publication.

One of the most important changes compared to the initial draft is that the law will apply now also to Romanian and EU legal persons, not only to individuals. Another important change is that the conditions under which an EU company/individual can buy land in Romania must be identical to the conditions which would apply to a Romanian company/individual in the EU member state of the purchaser (“reciprocity principle”).

Preemption rights have been preserved also in the final version of the law. The following categories of buyers have preemption rights (in this exact order): co-owners, lessees, neighbouring land owners, owners of land within the same physical block (“tarla” – a continuous piece of land delimited by permanent boundaries such as roads, rivers, dikes, etc.), and the Romanian State through the State Domains Agency ADS, at the same price and in the same conditions.

Also, the approval of each land transaction by either the local or central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is preserved in the final version of the law.

Basically, the law introduces an extensive procedure for agricultural land transactions which applies to both Romanian and EU citizens/companies.

Procedure

The land owner (seller) needs to register with the townhall a request by which he/she asks his/her land sale offer to be displayed/published so that the preemptors are thus informed + he/she will add some proof documents which will be foreseen in the implementation norms. The seller needs to attach also the list of preemptors. The townhall has to compare then this list with the records of the Agricultural Registry (handled by the townhall). Within 1 day of the registration of the seller’s request, the townhall has to display the sale offer at its headquarters (and possibly website), for 30 days. Also, within 3 days of the sale request registration, the townhall has to send to the local/central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture a file comprising: the list of preemptors, the request for publication/display of the sale offer, the sale offer and the proof documents. Then, within 3 days of the file registration, the local/central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture have to publish on their websites the sale offer for 15 days.

The holders of preemption rights must express in writing the acceptance of the sale offer within the 30 days in which it is publicly displayed.

If more preemptors of different ranks accept the offer, the seller can choose the winner (but only in the priority order provided by the law). If more preemptors of the same rank accept the offer, the seller can choose the winner.

If a preemptor of lower rank offers a price higher than the price stated in the sale offer or higher that the price offered by higher rank preemptors, the seller can restart the procedure (only once), for this higher price – with the higher rank preemptors.

If no preemptors show interest in the sale, than the sale is “free”, but still subject to this law and its implementation norms. In the end, the seller needs to inform in writing the townhall about the sale. The free sale of agricultural land at a lower price or under better conditions than the ones requested in the sale offer is forbidden and in such case the transaction is null.

The approval of the sale transaction is granted by the local structures of the Ministry of Agriculture for transactions of less than or equal to 30 ha, and by the central structure of the Ministry of Agriculture for transactions larger than 30 ha.

The law enters into force 30 days after its publication in the Official Gazette of Romania. After that, within 7 days, the implementation norms will have to be approved by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Regional Development and Public Administration, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Culture, in consultation with the National Union of Public Notaries and the National Agency for Cadastre and Land Registration.

The Romanian version of the law can be found on:

https://www.cdep.ro/pls/proiecte/docs/2013/pr579_13;1.pdf

 

Tourism

Romania displays its tourist products at Madrid International Tourism Fair

A Romanian delegation, made up of 25 companies operating in the tourism industry, headed by the President of the National Authority for Tourism (ANT), Razvan Filipescu, participated, from January 22 to 26, in the 4th edition of the Madrid International Tourism Fair – FITUR (Feria Internacional de TURism). Within the strategy for promoting Romanian tourism, Spain is a priority market. The figures on the number of Spanish tourists’ arrivals and overnight stays in accommodation units in Romania place Spain among the top 10 countries whose tourists visit Romania. FITUR has been the most important exhibition event dedicated to tourism in Spain since 1994. Romania’s presence in this event represents a new opportunity to unveil some of Romania’s key tourism products to relevant specialists and Spanish public, such as rural tourism, active tourism practiced in nature, city-breaks and cultural tourism.

Tourism with river cruise ships in Danube Delta, on the rise

Some 235 river cruise ships, a number that can be considered a record given the trend of this type of tourism in the area, will arrive this year in the Danube Delta (east) if the river’s waters remain at a navigable level. President of the Europolis group of companies, Victor Iancu told AGERPRES that so far contracts have been signed for almost 235 river cruise ships which this year will dock in the port of Tulcea and Mila 35. The ships will have aboard around 200 tourists each and will remain there for nearly 280 days. “The most passenger exchanges will be made by the river ships from Ukraine and Germany, with whose operators we have been collaborating for almost four and eight years respectively,” said Victor Iancu. Those tourists that will visit the Danube Delta will be joined by the passengers of 38 maritime cruise ships that will dock this year in Constanta and who have already expressed their wish to visit the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve. The first river cruise ships arrived in the Danube Delta in 2001. Back then only six cruise ships docked in Tulcea Port. In recent years, their number has reached over 200, with their arrivals in Tulcea Port or Mila 35 having been mainly influenced by the water level of the Danube River.

Automotive industry

National vehicle production, up 21.7%, in 2013

Romania’s national vehicle production recorded in 2013 a volume of 410,997 units, on the rise by 21.7% from the same period in 2012, according to the Association of Car Makers and Importers of Romania /APIA/. The APIA President Ernest Virgil Popovici explained in a January 28 press conference that this significant increase in the local production was due mainly to the car output, which recorded a 25.8% growth, equivalent to a volume of 410,959 units. In absolute figures, compared to 2012, by as many as 73,232 more vehicles were made last year. The highest volumes were recorded by Dacia Duster (123,213 units), followed by Dacia Sandero (119,228 units), Logan (84,050 units) and Ford B-Max (68,339 units). As far as the sales of used cars go, the APIA data show that over 266,000 units were sold in 2013, of which 221,800 cars, up by 27% from the same period a year earlier. Basically, those figures show that for every new vehicle (car + commercial vehicle) sold, other 3.8 used ones were brought to Romania. According to the APIA, as many as 362,869 cars were exported, by 9.6% more from 2012. The increase was due exclusively to cars, which recorded a plus of 13.1%. The best-exported model was Dacia Duster (118,901 units), followed by Sandero (114, 102 units), Ford B-Max (68,353) and Logan (43,373). The vehicle exports accounted for 88% of the national production in 2013.

Health & Pharma

Farmexim spends over 16 mln euros on new logistics centre

Farmexim Group has inaugurated its new logistics center in Balotesti (north-west of Bucharest, the county of Ilfov), following an investment exceeding 16 million euros, the company reported in a release sent to AGERPRES on January 28. The new central depot is equipped with last-generation technological outfits, at GDP (good distribution practice) standards, covers an area of over 15,000 square meters and has a storage capacity of over 6,000 pallets, allowing the handling of over 11,000 different items. The warehouse’s concept and the newest implemented collecting system with roller and belt conveyor will lead to a more efficient flow of operations. Also, the Warehouse Management system will allow a more professional management of all logistics operations at the national level, with high accuracy regarding traceability and control throughout the entire distribution chain, the above-quoted release reads. “We managed to build a logistics center at the highest standards, a yardstick for Romania’s pharmaceutical industry. We are sure that the new implemented facilities will improve the services we provide to our partners. In 2014 we want to maintain the same pace of development and achieve a 10 percent increase in turnover as regards our retail operations,” said Farmexim Managing Director Ovidiu Buluc. Farmexim, the top three medicine distributor in Romania, posted a gross turnover of about 1.5 billion lei (about 340 million euros) in 2013, up over 17 percent compared to 2012. In addition, the company recorded a profit higher by 50 percent compared to the previous year. Besides its financial targets, Farmexim’s main priority in 2014 is to expand the logistics centre in Timisoara. Farmexim Group, founded in 1990, includes Farmexim – import and distribution of pharmaceutical products, Help Net – national pharmacy chain, with over 150 selling points and Green Net – company importing and distributing cosmetics and food supplements. The Company forged partnerships with more than 250 national and foreign medicine makers and its portfolio numbers over 5,500 products that are supplied to 3,500 drug stores and over 400 hospitals.

MedLife to open four new clinics with EUR 4 million investment

MedLife, Romania’s largest private medical services provider, will open four new hyper-clinics by the end of the year, following an investment of EUR4 million, and estimates it will reach a turnover of EUR83 million. The new clinics will be open in Galati, Iasi, Constanta, and Cluj-Napoca, the company said in a press release on February 12. “Although it’s been 20 years since the start of investments in private healthcare in Romania, none of the major operators has managed to cover all historical areas, much less towns with over 250,000 inhabitants. As leaders of the private healthcare market we plan to become the first medical operator with national coverage. We have already started investments in two hyper-clinics in Galati and Iasi, which will open in the first half of the year. our investment program will continue in the second part of the year, when we plan to complete clinics in Constanta and Cluj-Napoca. We are also in advanced talks to continue expanding aggressively countrywide in the following years,” said MedLife board chairman Mihai Marcu. MedLife also plans to invest EUR2 million this year to renew equipment in its existing clinics.

The company estimates t will make an operating profit of EUR12 million this year, 20% higher than in 2013, and a turnover of EUR81 to 83 million. MedLife had a turnover of EUR72 million and an operating profit of EUR10 million in 2013. The company has been operating the Romanian private healthcare market since 1996 and has outpatient treatment units, hospitals, maternities, laboratories, and pharmacies. Source: www.zfenglish.com.

Dutch presence in Romania

ING Asigurari revenues up 2.8% in 2013, to RON 559.6 million

ING Asigurari de Viata subscribed premiums of RON559.6 million in 2013, up 2.8% on the year, and had an estimated pre-tax profit of RON12.1 million, from RON29 million in 2012, the insurer said on February 12, 2014. According to company data, it’s insurance portfolio last year was 7% higher than in 2012 and 73% of the policies were traditional life insurance. The value of financial assets under the insurer’s management reached RON2.5 billion, up 8% compared to 2012. ING Asigurari de Viata paid claims of RON121.7 million last year, 27.3% higher than in 2012. Nearly 78% of the claims were on contracts that reached maturity. “We ended 2013 with positive results on the life insurance and voluntary private pension segments,” general manager Marius Popescu said in a press release. ING Asigurari de Viata is the largest local insurer by 2012 revenues. The company is part of Dutch financial group ING and has been present on the Romanian market since 1997. Source: www.zfenglish.com

KLG Europe Logistics Romania 2013 turnover up 11%, to EUR 21 million

KLG Europe Logistics Romania had a turnover of EUR21 million in 2013, up 11% on the year, mainly driven by local and international road transport activities, the company said on January 30. The company’s road transport operations, which make up more than 35% of its business, grew 18% in 2013 and KLG gained around 350 new clients for its transport and distribution services. KLG clients include Honeywell Friction Materials, Prista Oil, and Saint-Gobain Glass Romania. The company invested EUR5 million to build a new cross dock terminal that will be a 10,000 square meter extension of its logistics platform in Bucharest. Founded in 918, Dutch group KLG Europe operates internationally via centers in the Netherlands, UK, China, Turkey, and Romania. KLG Europe provides logistics and storage, road, sea and air transport services. In Romania KLG Europe has been present since 2006 and has six distribution hubs in Bacau, Brasov, Constanta, Craiova, Cluj-Napoca and Timisoara, with a total storage capacity of over 50,000 sqm.

Events, announcements & useful web links 

 

Seminar on “The Development of the Pig Sector” – April 4, Bucharest

The Netherlands Embassy is currently working on the organisation of a seminar devoted to the development of the pig production chain, to be held in Bucharest on April 4. Dutch experts in pig technology and economics will cover subjects of high interest for the Romanian players in the pig production chain. The event will also be an opportunity for Romanian pig/pork producers to meet the various Dutch suppliers coming to Bucharest for this occasion. Also invited is a guest-delegation of Bulgarian pig/pork producers. The event is part of a series of three seminars which will take place between 31 March and 4 April in Budapest, Belgrade and Bucharest.

Dutch companies from the pig sector wishing to join the series of seminars as well as Romanian pig/pork producers willing to join the seminar in Bucharest can contact the agri section of the Embassy at BKR-LNV@minbuza.nl for more information or registration.

Join the Trade Mission to Romania lead by Minister Ploumen (22-25 April)

Romania offers lots of business opportunities for Dutch companies and knowledge institutions. A strategic location, a growing economy, a large market, skilled labour, abundant land and resources, excellent language skills, EU-funds and an ideal place for ‘nearshoring’ activities (ICT, production).

Are you interested in meeting  new business partners? Do you want to explore new business opportunities? Do you want to strengthen the ties with your existing business partners or clients, during a high-level visit?

Take this opportunity to travel with the Minister to Romania.

For more information, please see:

https://www.rvo.nl/actueel/evenementen/economische-missie-naar-roemeni%C3%AB-met-minister-lilianne-ploumen

National Flower Arrangement Contest – 5th edition

The organisation of the National Flower Arrangement Contest has already become a tradition for the Netherlands Embassy in Bucharest. Combined every year with a demonstration by a famous Dutch master florist, this unique event is a great opportunity for people active in the flower sector in Romania to strengthen their knowledge and improve their customer services. At the same time, it is meant to reward the talent and creativity of the Romanian florists and to promote the aesthetic education and use of flowers in our everyday life. This year’s edition will be organised in the beginning of May – more information will follow in the next newsletter. Short movies of the previous two editions are available at https://vimeo.com/65884861 and https://vimeo.com/41147290.

Economic network of the Netherlands in Romania – www.hollandtrade.ro
Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Bucharest www.netherlandsemb.ro
Netherlands Enterprise Agency – https://english.rvo.nl/
The Netherlands – Romanian Chamber of Commerce – www.netherlands.ro
The Dutch-Romanian Association www.nederland.ro
The Dutch Romanian Network www.dutchromaniannetwork.nl
Romanian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development www.madr.ro
Romanian Ministry of Economy, Trade and Business Environment www.minind.ro
Romanian Ministry of Europena Funds – www.fonduri-ue.ro/
  Romanian Ministry of Public Finance – www.mfinante.ro
Romanian Ministry of Environment and Forests www.mmediu.ro
Romanian Ministry of Transport www.mt.ro
National Institute for Statistics www.insse.ro
Romania Trade & Invest – www.romtradeinvest.ro
Exhibitions in Bucharest, Romania – www.romexpo.org

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Macroeconomics & Business environment

EUR/USD exchange rates against RON

Average January 2014 exchange rates were:

 

1 EUR = 4.5219 RON
1 USD = 3.3206 RON

Source: National Bank of Romania (www.bnr.ro)

 

Nationwide unemployment rate at 7.1% at end-2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, in December 2013, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was estimated at 7.1%, decreasing with 0.2 percentage points as compared to the previous month, and increasing with 0.4 percentage points as against the level recorded in December 2012.

 

Average earnings in December 2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, In December 2013, the average gross nominal earnings were 2430 lei, by 6.7% higher than the one registered in November 2013. The average net nominal earnings were 1760 lei, increasing as against the previous month with 110 lei (6.7%).

Consumer Price Index in Janaury 2014 and year 2013

According to the data published by the National Statistics Institute, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) in January 2014 was 100.85% compared to December 2013 and 101.06% compared to January 2013. The overall average price increase determined on the basis of the CPI was 3.6% in the last 12 months (February 2013 – January 2014) compared to the previous 12 months (February 2012 – January 2013).

 

Gross Domestic Product in the fourth quarter of 2013

According to the first estimates of the National Statistics Institute, the Romanian Gross Domestic Product in Q4 2013 was, in real terms, by 1.7% higher as compared to Q3 2013 (seasonally adjusted data). As against the same quarter of 2012, the Gross Domestic Product recorded an increase by 5.2% for the unadjusted series and by 5.1% for the seasonally adjusted series. In 2013, as compared to 2012, Gross Domestic Product increased by 3.5%.

BNR Board decides to cut rate of monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year

The Board of the National Bank of Romania (BNR) on February 4 decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year, from 3.75 percent, starting on February 5, 2014, said the central bank in a press release. According to the above-mentioned source, in the meeting of February 4, 2014, the BNR Board also decided to maintain the current levels of the rates of the mandatory minimum reserves to be applied to the liabilities in lei and foreign currency of the lending institutions and to properly manage the liquidity of the banking system. The BNR Board also examined and approved the quarterly report on inflation, a document that will be presented in a news conference to be organized on February 6, 2014. Since last summer BNR has decided five times to cut the key interest. Thus, the BNR Board in early July 2013 decided to cut the key interest to 5 percent from 5.25 percent a year and in August to 4.5 percent from 5 percent a year. Another two cuts of the monetary policy interest, by 0.25 percentage points each, were decided on in September and November, thus the key interest amounted to 4 percent. On January 8, 2014, the BNR Board decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.75 percent from 4 percent a year, starting on January 9, 2014.

 

BNR Board decides to cut rate of monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year

The Board of the National Bank of Romania (BNR) on February 4 decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.5 percent a year, from 3.75 percent, starting on February 5, 2014, said the central bank in a press release. According to the above-mentioned source, in the meeting of February 4, 2014, the BNR Board also decided to maintain the current levels of the rates of the mandatory minimum reserves to be applied to the liabilities in lei and foreign currency of the lending institutions and to properly manage the liquidity of the banking system. The BNR Board also examined and approved the quarterly report on inflation, a document that will be presented in a news conference to be organized on February 6, 2014. Since last summer BNR has decided five times to cut the key interest. Thus, the BNR Board in early July 2013 decided to cut the key interest to 5 percent from 5.25 percent a year and in August to 4.5 percent from 5 percent a year. Another two cuts of the monetary policy interest, by 0.25 percentage points each, were decided on in September and November, thus the key interest amounted to 4 percent. On January 8, 2014, the BNR Board decided to cut the rate of the monetary policy interest to 3.75 percent from 4 percent a year, starting on January 9, 2014.

 

Romania sets 2019 as new Euro adoption deadline

Romania’s government expects the country will meet this year all the Maastricht criteria to converge to the euro area and set the year 2019 as a self-imposed deadline for the euro adoption. “In 2014, Romania meets all the euro convergence criteria: the annual inflation rate, the yield on government bonds, a stable exchange rate, a budget deficit below 3% of the gross domestic product and a public debt level below 60% of GDP,” the government said in a presentation of the 2013 economic indicators and the targets for 2014-2015. “We are on track regarding the real convergence.” Romania had hoped to join the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) II as of 2013 and converge to the eurozone two years later, but economic and financial difficulties both at home and in EU have made the target obsolete. Source: www.zfenglish.com

 

IMF and EC Staff Visit January 21-February 4, 2014

Teams from the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission visited Bucharest during January 21-February 4 to conduct discussions on the combined first and second reviews under the IMF Stand-By Agreement (SBA) and on the status of Romania’s precautionary balance of payments program with the European Union. Staff level agreement has been reached. The program remains broadly on track. Most end-December performance criteria were met and structural benchmarks have either been met or are nearing completion. More info is available at https://www.fmi.ro/index.php?pid=269&lg=en&presa.

 

The international trade of goods in December and the year 2013

December 2013

In December 2013, according to preliminary estimations of the National Institute of Statistics, FOB exports amounted to 17189.2million lei (3857.0 million euro) and CIF imports amounted to 19399.3 million lei (4351.5 million euro). Compared to December 2012, exports increased by 21.2% at values expressed in lei (22.5% at values expressed in euro) and imports increased by 7.0% at values expressed in lei (8.1% at values expressed in euro). Compared to November 2013, in December 2013, exports decreased by 14.5% at values expressed in lei (14.7% at values expressed in euro) and imports decreased by 11.2% at values expressed in lei (11.5% at values expressed in euro). In December 2013, the FOB-CIF commercial deficit was of 2210.1 million lei (494.5 million euro), 1734.0 million lei (382.7 million euro) less than in December 2012.

 

Year 2013

In the year 2013, FOB exports amounted to 219121.6 million lei (49562.6 million euro) and CIF imports amounted to 244334.7 million lei (55264.5 million euro). Compared to the year 2012, exports increased by 9.1% at values expressed in lei (10.0% at values expressed in euro) and imports increased by 0.2% at values expressed in lei (1.0% at values expressed in euro). In the year 2013, the FOB-CIF commercial deficit was of 25213.1 million lei (5701.9 million euro), 17774.9 million lei (3932.4 million euro) less than in the year 2012. In the year 2013, the Intra-community trade of goods (Intra EU28) amounted to 152503.4 million lei (34505.4 million euro) for dispatches and to 185013.9 million lei (41861.2 million euro) for arrivals, representing 69.6% of the total exports and 75.7% of the total imports. In the year 2013, the Extra-community trade of goods (Extra EU28) amounted to 66618.2 million lei (15057.2 million euro) for exports and to 59320.8 million lei (13403.3 million euro) for imports, representing 30.4% of the total exports and 24.3% of the total imports.

Amendments to the Banking Ordinance

In brief

GEO no. 113/2013 on budgetary measures, amending and supplementing GEO no. 99/2006 on credit institutions and capital adequacy, was published in the Official Gazette no. 830 dated 23 December 2013. This GEO brings a considerable number of changes to GEO no. 99/2006 on credit institutions and capital adequacy (“Banking Ordinance”). These changes are mainly aimed at strengthening the supervision capacity of the National Bank of Romania (“NBR”).

In detail

Credit institutions are required to draft recovery plans to restore their financial situation following a significant deterioration thereof; The activity of issuing electronic money is included in the category of activities that can be provided in Romania under the “European passport” – by credit institutions from Member States, as well as by Romanian credit institutions Romania, outside the country; In cases of emergency, the National Bank of Romania (“NBR”) is entitled to take the necessary preventive measures with regard to credit institutions from other Member States that perform activities in Romania, with a view to ensuring protection against financial instability; The obligation of credit institution managers to exercise exclusively the function for which they were appointed has been removed. Directors and managers have the right to carry out more mandates simultaneously, according to specific individual circumstances and with the approval of the NBR; In the event that violations of the law are found, financial auditors are required to pass the information not only to the NBR, but also to the directors and managers of the credit institution concerned; The NBR has new responsibilities, such as: – Conducting crisis tests regarding supervised credit institutions, at least annually; – Verification of compliance by credit institutions with the internal approaches requirements, at least every three years; – Establishing a schedule of prudential supervision of credit institutions, at least annually; The text provides the conditions under which the NBR can provide information regarding the prudential supervision of credit institutions to the investigation committees of Parliament, the Court of Auditors and other Romanian entities with powers of investigation; The text provides the specific circumstances depending on which the individualisation of sanctions and sanctioning measures taken by the NBR against credit institutions are be made; A public warning sanction is introduced which indicates the person responsible and the act which was committed; The limits of certain sanctions have been increased considerably: the fine imposed on legal persons, of up to 10% of the total net turnover of the previous financial year; the fine imposed on individuals of up to EUR 5 million. The possibility of applying fines that amount to up to twice the value of the benefit obtained by committing the act, if such facts can be determined, has also been introduced; The NBR is to establish mechanisms to protect financial institution employees who report violations by credit institutions and guarantee their privacy and confidentiality. The provisions amending the Banking Ordinance entered into force as of 1 January 2014, except for certain provisions regarding liquidity requirements. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 830 dated 23 December 2013.

The takeaway

Directors and managers have the right to carry out more mandates simultaneously, according to specific individual circumstances and with the approval of the NBR. The limits of certain sanctions have been increased considerably: up to 10% of the total net turnover (for legal persons) and up to EUR 5 million (for individuals). Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Amendments brought to the Fiscal code and other legislative acts

Government Emergency Ordinance no. 111/2013 regulating fiscal measures and amending legislative acts („the Ordinance”) was published on 19 December 2013 and enters into force as of 1 January 2014. The major changes are summarised below:  Cash accounting VAT scheme • The application of the cash accounting VAT scheme becomes optional and the collection of output VAT and deduction of input VAT are performed within the VAT return related to the month when the cashing/payment of the invoice occurred. • Transition from the mandatory application of the cash accounting VAT scheme to the optional one is covered by transitory rules. Excise duties
• The increase of the excise duties level for diesel, leaded and unleaded petrol and kerosene is postponed from 1 January 2014 to 1 April 2014. The Law no. 148/2012 regarding the recording of commercial transactions through electronic means, previously suspended, is abrogated. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 809/2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Releasing guarantees provided by authorised warehousekeepers

The Ministry of Finance published Order no. 1920/2013 on 3 December 2013 providing the procedure for updating guarantees in line with Article 206^54 paragraph (4^2) of Law no. 571 / 2003 regarding the Fiscal Code. In this respect, authorised warehousekeepers who have previously lodged a guarantee for more than the maximum threshold provided by the law may request the partial release of that guarantee by 5 December. Entry into force: 3 December 2013. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 748/ 3 December 2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Minimum wage levels for 2014

Government Decision no.871 / 2013 on the guaranteed gross minimum wage was published on 15 November 2013. The Decision sets a minimum wage of RON 850 per month for a full-time work schedule of 168 hours per month. This wage level applies during the period 1 January 2014 – 30 June 2014. As of 1 July 2014, the gross minimum wage will be increased to RON 900 per month for a full-time work schedule of 168 hours. Setting a salary below these levels by means of an individual labour contract will be considered an offence and sanctioned with a fine of between RON 1,000 to RON 2,000. Source: Official Gazette of Romania no. 703 / 15 November 2013. Information available on www.pwc.ro.

Foreign investment at the end of December 2013

According to the data published by the National Office of the Trade Registry, at the end of December 2013, there were 192,416 companies registered in Romania with foreign participation in social capital, total foreign investment amounting to EUR 37.7 billion. The top of the first five foreign investors was led by the Netherlands, with 4,441 companies registered and total invested capital of EUR 7.3 billion, followed by Austria with 6,677 companies and a total investment of EUR 4.93 billion, Germany with 20,146 companies and a total investment of EUR 4.4, Cyprus with 5,403 registered companies and a total investment reaching EUR 2.4 billion, and France with 7,616 companies and an investment of EUR 2.1 billion.

 

The Netherlands – first investor in Romania, with over 7 billion euros

Foreign Affairs Minister Titus Corlatean on January 27 said that the Romanian authorities would make efforts for consolidating the position of first investor The Neterlands had in relation with Romania. “I pointed out the Romanian side’s interest in consolidating the position of first investor Holland has in relation with Romania. (…) At present, The Neterlands has a total investment capital worth over 7 billion euros and this represents over 20 percent of the total foreign investments in our country, with approximately 4,500 Dutch companies active in Romania. We plan to reduce the trade balance deficit, in the conditions in which last year, included, we find an increase in the economic trade exchanges, an increase of the Romanian exports, included,” Titus Corlatean said at the end of the talks with his Dutch counterpart Franz Timmermans, who is paying an official visit to Bucharest. The Dutch diplomacy head is paying an official visit to Bucharest, at the invitation of his Romanian counterpart Titus Corlatean.

Timmermans: Constanta Port could cooperate with Rotterdam Port to learn from its experience

The Constanta Port (southeastern Romania) could have the opportunity to learn from the Dutch experience in what ports are concerned, under a cooperation programme with the Dutch Port of Rotterdam, the Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, Frans Timmermans, told a press conference held together with his Romanian counterpart, Titus Corlatean. Asked what were the Netherlands’s intentions with respect to the Constanta Port, in case it gets privatised or it introduces a private management scheme, Minister Timmermans replied: “We have quite a lot of experience when it comes to ports, especially when it comes to the Rotterdam Port[…] Which is a huge port, since it’s also the main port of Germany and not only of the Netherlands’s. This port can be described as a success mainly due to its infrastructure and logistics and also due to the fact that it is managed in a diligent and open way. However, regardless of what the Romanian authorities will decide related to the future of the Constanta Port, it does not depend on us. It depends on the Romanian authorities,”. The head of the Dutch diplomacy also added that Romania and the Netherlands could become suppliers “of logistics for the entire Europe” and that, in his opinion, “it will be good that Rotterdam and Constanta ports continue to cooperate.”

Dr. Oetker Buys Land Plot For New Plant Near Curtea de Arges

Dr. Oetker, the biggest player on Romanian food additive market, is set to build a new plant in Valea Iasului locality of Arges county, after it bought a 14-ha land plot located near its current production unit. Investments are likely to go beyond EUR15 million. Dr. Oetker paid EUR1.8 million for the land plot owned by Valea Iasului mayoralty, according to information provided by Nicolae Barbu, mayor of the locality where the German-held group’s plant is located. Barbu says Dr. Oetker officials stated they would invest EUR15-20 million to build a new production unit, but for the time being the German group has not sent any construction project for authorization to the mayoralty.

The representatives of Dr. Oetker Ro, the Romanian subsidiary of the German group, did not answer ZF’s request for information by edition close. The company’s expansion comes as a rising number of companies have in recent years decided to close down production units. Dr. Oetker is the biggest tax payer in Valea Iasului, bringing around 1.5 million lei (EUR340,000) to the locality’s budget, namely around 65% of the total. The food additive plant currently employs some 350 people. The new plant is likely to double current production and create 200-250 new jobs, according to Nicolae Barbu’s estimates. Dr. Oetker, with EUR55 million in revenue in 2012 (the latest data available), is among the 20 largest companies in Arges county, with Automobile Dacia holding the leading position in the ranking, according to Trade Registry data. Source: www.zfenglish.com

 

SOCAR invests nearly EUR 1 million in its first filling station in Bucharest

The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic SOCAR has invested approximately one million euros in its first gas station opened in the Romanian capital city, at Chiajna, along the city belt. The gas station in Bucharest is the 25th opened by SOCAR in Romania. SOCAR Romania is the representative of the oil and natural gas company owned by the state of Azerbaijan (The State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic), one of the world’s leading oil and natural gas companies. SOCAR invests billions of US dollars annually in transport infrastructure, while being part of key European projects, meant to increase energy security in Europe by diversifying the natural gas reserves. The company entered the Romanian market in 2011, by establishing the SOCAR Petroleum and by creating and consolidating a network of filling stations located all over the country. So far, the company created more than 320 jobs in Romania and carried out investments worth in excess of 50 million euros.

 

Lukoil to build 9 MW solar park in Romania

Lukoil Energy&Gas Romania, a unit of Russia’s second-largest oil group Lukoil, plans to build a 9 MW photovoltaic park near its Petrotel refinery in the southern city of Ploiesti, people familiar with the matter told Mediafax. The project is estimated to cost around EUR13.5 million. Lukoil secured the construction license for the project at the end of 2013. Lukoil officials said last year they were considering building solar power parks on land near the refinery in Ploiesti. At that time, they said they were aiming for an installed power of up to 12 MW. Apart from the refinery in Ploiesti, Lukoil operates a network of 300 gas stations in Romania. Solar power projects under construction in Romania currently add up to around 1,000 MW.

 

EU funds & International financing organisations in Romania

 

EBRD grants EUR 11.8 million loan for water and sewage works in southern Romania

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will lend EUR11.8 million to water utility Apa Canal 2000 to co-finance upgrades on water and sewage systems in Arges county, Romania. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will lend EUR11.8 million to water utility Apa Canal 2000 to co-finance upgrades on water and sewage systems in Arges county, Romania. The loan will co-finance a regional investment program for water supply and wastewater facilities and networks under EU Cohesion Fund financing for Romania. This loan is the 21st investment under the EBRD’s Romania EU Cohesion Funds Water Co-Financing Framework, launched in 2010. The facility was originally approved in November 2010, with a volume of EUR 200 million, and further increased by EUR 130 million in September 2012, following strong local demand. To date, the EBRD has mobilized approximately EUR2 billion of EU funding in Romania’s water and wastewater facilities. Since the start of its operations in the country the EBRD has invested approximately EUR6.4 billion across over 343 projects in Romania and has further mobilized over EUR 14 billion for these ventures from other sources of financing.

 

Transport infrastructure and environment are Romania’s main targets for EU funds

The transport infrastructure and the environment are the areas where Romania intends to direct the greatest part of structural and cohesion funds during the 2014-2020 financial years. “The way that Romania plans to use the structural and cohesion funds allocated [by the European Union] to our country is vital for sustaining a development concept,” Prime Minister Victor Ponta said on February 4 at Victoria Palace, at the end of a meeting of the Interinstitutional Committee for the 2014-2020 Partnership Agreement. According to him, the Government will propose the European Commission to allocate 5.7 billion euros for the road, railway, water, and air transportation infrastructure; 3 billion euros for environment projects; 270 million euros for energy efficiency; 1 billion euros for the employment of youth and unemployed people; 1 billion euros for social assistance, especially to the Roma minority; 1 billion euros for education and training programmes, plus 350 million euros for the educational infrastructure. The medical structure should receive European funds amounting to 500 million euros, which would allow building three regional hospitals. Victor Ponta also announced that 520 million euros is to be directed to programmes for the enhancement of local administrative capacity, and 300 million euros to the central technical support; 800 million euros should be allocated to projects for the small and medium enterprises and technology parks; 2.8 billion euros to urban development; 700 million euros to research; and 1.1 billion euros to projects concerning county roads and beltways. The IT sector might receive funds amounting to 550 million euros, while 450 million euros could be allocated to projects related to historical, cultural and tourist areas. The Minister of EU Funds Eugen Teodorovici specified that these sums are only Romania’s proposals to be submitted to the European Commission; they will be further analysed in Brussels and negotiated with the Romanian counterpart.

 

EIB providing BCR Leasing EUR 15 million for SMEs, public entities

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing a EUR 15 million loan to BCR Leasing to finance small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), midcap companies and public entities in Romania implementing projects in industry, services and infrastructure, EIB reported on February 13. “EIB funds will be on-lent with the help of a new EIB intermediary – BCR Leasing – in order to facilitate the access of SMEs, midcap companies and municipalities to long-term finance. The new facility will strengthen the EIB’s support to SMEs and midcaps and foster their competitiveness and productivity. Given that they represent the engine of the Romanian economy the operation will have a positive impact on economic growth prospects and job creation,” says Mihai Tanasescu, EIB Vice-President with responsibility for Romania. This is a first tranche from a total credit line of EUR 75 million agreed with the EIB. This loan is in line with the EIB’s priority to support Europe’s SMEs, particularly in the difficult current economic environment. To this end, the EIB is joining forces with well-established financing institutions, like BCR Leasing, that know the local market and have SMEs, midcap companies and public entities as their customers. BCR Leasing IFN S.A., part of the BCR Group which is majority-owned by the Erste Group, operates in in the area of financial leasing for the procurement of industrial vehicles and equipment, agricultural equipment, medical equipment, software and IT equipment.

 

Energy

 

Romania’s renewable energy capacity surges 82% in 2013

The production of renewable energy in Romania reached record levels at the end of last year, when the overall capacity of existing projects in the energy system attained 4,255 MW, a 82% increase compared to the end of 2013, according to data of the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE). Namely, on December 31, 2013, wind energy projects totalling 2,503 MW, photovoltaic projects of 1,155 MW, biomass capacities of 65 MW, and hydro power plants amounting to 530 MW were operational. Renewable energy producers get subsidies with green certificates, paid by all the consumers including the households, and highlighted separately on the electricity bills. Romania has committed to reach 24% of renewable energy in its total consumption in 2020, but ANRE has announced that this target has been already reached on January 1, 2014. To curb the surge of bills, on July 1, 2013 the Government decided to postpone the issue of some green certificates until 2017 – 2020. Early in January, President Traian Basescu sent back to the Parliament the Law for the approval of the Government Emergency Order 57/2013. This Law included the provision of delaying the issue of green certificates only for the projects commissioned before January 1, 2014, which was not originally stipulated in the Order text. Therefore, by not signing the Law, the effects of the Order are cumulated with those of the Government Decision of December, and solar power projects now get only one green certificate, the wind power projects only 0.5 certificates, and the micro hydro power plants only 1.3 certificates.

 

IMF: Gas market for industrial consumers fully liberalized by midyear

The deregulation of the gas market for industrial consumers will be completed by midyear 2014, earlier than expected, the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission in Romania Andrea Schaechter said on Tuesday at the press conference closing her visit to Bucharest. Romania has fulfilled its commitments concerning the deregulation. As regards the electricity, the market has been already deregulated since January 1 for non-household consumers, as planned. For the natural gas, the deregulation will be completed in July, earlier than previously estimated, Schaechter said. According to calendars agreed by the Romanian Government and the IMF in 2012, the electricity market has been fully liberalized on January 1, 2014 for industrial consumers, and for the households the liberalization will be achieved on December 31, 2017. The original schedule for the deregulation of gas had set liberalization for industrial consumers on December 31, 2014; this term has been advanced to July 1, 2014. For the households, prices will be completely liberalized on December 31, 2018. The measures taken by the Government to protect vulnerable consumers have also met the expectations, the head of the IMF mission added.

 

 

Environment & water

 

Romanian-Bulgarian cross-border project to fight floods and water pollution

More than 550,000 people in the Giurgiu (southern Romania) – Ruse (northern Bulgaria) border region will benefit starting on January 24 of a warning system using sirens, and of boats and vehicles for interventions in the event of floods or accidental water pollution, as a Romanian-Bulgarian common project to this effect has been completed. “This ‘Common actions for emergency management in hydrological and weather-related events and in cases of accidental water pollution’ project is the latest in a series of eight projects implemented within the Romanian-Bulgarian Cross-Border Programme, completed today with our Bulgarian partners,” project manager Despina Oprea said at a press conference on January 24. She mentioned that this project has built an efficient warning system, by purchasing and installing horns in Giurgiu County (southern Romania). It also allows generating flood hazard maps in the cross-border Giurgiu-Ruse region. Acquisitions of boats and specific vehicles also resulted in an increased capacity of intervention and rescue. “Now the Ruse firemen are the best equipped in the whole country, as the result of these projects, (…) and the transfrontier collaboration in [the region of] Giurgiu-Ruse has become an example of good practice in this field,” Bulgarian project manager Valentin Krasnaliev declared in Giurgiu on January 24. The closing of the common intervention project in the border region has been also attended by the chief of the Giurgiu Inspectorate for Emergency Situations Emil Apostol, Giurgiu County public administrator Dumitru Beianu and representative of the Danubius Euroregion Lili Ganceva.

 

Project of EUR 9.3 million for floods management in Prut, Siret upper basins

Almost 42 million lei (9.3 million euros) is allocated for floods management in the upper basins of the Prut and Siret Rivers (east), a project recently launched in Iasi (east), the “Romanian Waters” National Administration /ANAR/ has announced. The project titled “Prevention and Protection against Floods in the Prut and Siret Upper Basins, by Implementing a Modern Monitoring System with Automated Station” (East Avert) – MIS ETC 966, is a cross-border one, between Romania, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova. The total value of the programme is 9.3 million euros, of which 90% are funds provided through the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument through the Joint Operational Programme Romania – Ukraine – Republic of Moldova 2007 – 2013, and 10 % is co-financing provided by the project partners. According to the ANAR, the main expected results of the project East Avert are increasing the effectiveness of the warning/alarm system between the three countries by improving the accuracy of forecasts, both in terms of variations of flows as well as the propagation time of flashflood, improving the response time to emergencies and improving the monitoring of quality parameters. Also stipulated is conducting major investments, such as: rehabilitation works and increasing the monitoring capacity at Stanca Costesti Reservoir, installing 24 automated hydrometric stations on the Ukrainian territory, located in the upper catchment of the Siret and Prut Rivers to determine the quantity parameters and two hydrometric stations at Stanca Costesti Reservoir. Moreover, developed under the project will be six dispatching centres in Romania, managed by the Prut-Barlad and Siret Water Basin Administrations, three dispatching centres in Ukraine (Dniester-Prut and Chernovtsy Hydromet Waters Department) and a dispatching centre in the Republic of Moldova (Moldova Waters Agency). Also, four upgraded basin forecasting centres will be set up, which will apply the same forecasting model.

 

9.41 million euros SME programme for reducing CO2 emissions

The Romanian small and medium enterprises (SME) that develop programmes for reducing CO2 emission through energy saving will benefit of foreign financing up to 700,000 euros from the “Industrial Energy Efficiency Programme for SMEs.” The overall amount of the programme stands at more than 9.41 million euros; it has been launched at a specialized conference on February 10.

The programme is financed through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area (EAA) carried out by the Ministry of Economy, in its capacity of Programme Operator; its specific goal is to reduce the CO2 footprint by energy saving in the industry and by reducing the greenhouse gas emissions. According to its authors, the “Industrial Energy Efficiency Programme for SMEs” gives priority to the programmes that result in the greatest cuts of the CO2 emissions, based on the financial allocations to the grants programme (tonnes of CO2/1000 euros). The programme amounts to 9,411,765 euros, out of which 8,235,294 euros are EAA funds, and 1,411,765 euros comes from co-financing; this is a grant-type financing. The grant minimum is 200,000 euros per project, and the maximum is 700,000 euros. The estimated application period for projects is between January and April 2014; the programme will be carried out between 2013 and 2016. The Donor States of this programme (Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein) have signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Romania, designating the Ministry of Economy as Programme Operator for the “Energy Efficiency” Programme financed by the EAA Financial Mechanism approved on October 1, 2013. The launching conference of the new financing programme has been held on Monday in Bucharest; it was the first out of four similar events in February, the next ones being those in Cluj-Napoca (central Romania), Timisoara (west), and Iasi (northeast). The European goals, and implicitly Romania’s are to cut down greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20 percent until 2020, on a 1990 basis; to increase the proportion of renewable energy in the European Union’s overall consumption by 20 percent; and to increase energy efficiency by 20 percent.

 

Agriculture & food      

 

Romania, China could sign new memorandum on export of live sheep, mutton

Agerpres – ROMANIAN ECONOMIC HIGHLIGHTS, February 10 – 16, 2014, No. 7

Romania and China could sign a new memorandum on the export of live sheep and mutton, after other two memoranda on the export of breeding cattle and pork were signed in November of last year. In this respect, the Romanian Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Daniel Constantin on February 12 discussed with the Ambassador of China to Romania, Huo Yuzhen, a number of aspects regarding the Romanian – Chinese cooperation in agriculture. The two officials appreciated the fact that progress has been recorded in terms of the cooperation between the two sides, reminding the fact that several Chinese delegations have been present in Romania lately, with the investors having shown interest in Romania’s cattle, pig and sheep breeding sector, reads a Romanian Agriculture Ministry (MADR) release issued for AGERPRES. According to MADR, thr Agriculture Minister of the Chinese Government, Han Changfu, will pay a visit to Bucharest in early April 2014. “It is a clear signal that Premier Li Keqiang’s visit, which took place in November 2013, is followed by concrete deeds and things occurring in the collaboration between the two states,” said Minister Daniel Constantin. Agriculture Minister Daniel Constantin underscored the interest voiced by the operators in the Romanian agricultural sector for the collaboration with the Chinese side in a number of areas of interest – live cattle and beef products, live sheep and mutton, as well as pork. Also, the minister reminded the intention to sign a new memorandum on live sheep and mutton. Romania has 14 million sheep and the relevant export potential amounts to 4-5 million heads.

 

AgriMin Constantin: Romania’s agriculture starts to be competitive after 20 years

After 20 years, 2014 is the year when Romania’s agriculture becomes competitive, but to stabilise production massive investments are needed in the irrigation system, Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Daniel Constantin said in Ploiesti (southern Romania) on February 14 in front of over 500 representatives of farmers and local authorities. “Since 1994, Romania hasn’t had any positive [agri-food trade] balance [until last year]. Romania’s agriculture is becoming competitive, and we are starting exporting to third countries – Asia, Arab countries. On the European market we still have very much work to do, but this thing can only be done by supporting the irrigation system,” Constantin said. He added that “if we want to be competitive in the future, besides the other measures established through the National Programme for Rural Development we need to stabilise production at a certain level and invest very much in the irrigation sector, the irrigation sector being the main priority of the current government.” Daniel Constantin said that half of the secondary infrastructure taken over by the irrigation operators’ organisations was plundered, but it would be restored on European funds. “The amounts devoted to the irrigation systems in the secondary infrastructure stand at 370 million euros. The main infrastructure does not benefit from European funds, but we are at an advanced stage of talks for a public-private partnership programme,” said Constantin. He showed that “over the next 2-3 years, we can talk about a massive rehabilitation of the irrigation sector, which will ensure increased competitiveness of the Romanian agriculture.” Almost 1,000 farmers and local authorities, mayors, local councillors participated in meetings with the Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Constantin in Ploiesti and at Valenii de Munte, as part of preparations of the 2014-2020 National Rural Development Programme.

Source: Agerpres – ROMANIAN ECONOMIC HIGHLIGHTS, February 10 – 16, 2014, No. 7

 

 

Romania Exports Cold Cuts Worth of EUR100M Annually

Romania’s cold cut exports have registered a nine-fold increase in the past decade, shows a ZF survey based on data provided by the country’s statistics institute INS and European Union’s statistics office Eurostat. Besides salami and sausages, Romania also exports snail meat or Wiener schnitzel. Austrian investor Johann Gierlinger (owner of Convenience Prod), Ioan Popa (Transavia) and the Naghi family (Aldis Calarasi) are the top three exporters of processed meat products in Romania, a market that reached EUR100 million last year. Besides well-known names such as CrisTim, Caroli, Kosarom, Scandia or Reinert, the ranking also includes niche producers such as Rolux or Bioprod, which process snail meat. As a matter of fact, Convenience Prod, leader of this segment, also focuses on ready-to-cook meat products such as schnitzels or cordon bleu, an area tapped to a lesser extent by other players, as sausages and salamis still bring the largest slice of revenue.

Exports cover loan rates

“We operated the first exports 5-6 years ago, after Romania joined the EU. This is a segment that generates euro amounts that help us pay our foreign currency loans without being exposed to forex risks,” explained Neculai Apostol, owner of Kosarom group, a top 20 processed meat exporter. At the time the company took the first steps abroad, processed meat exports of Romanian companies neared EUR40 million and entrepreneurs active in this industry were starting to feel the taste of profit from trucks sent to major economies of Western Europe and to cities and regions with the biggest concentrations of Romanian communities. Domestic processors most firmly tapped European markets considering over 95% of the value of last year exports is in the EU markets. This can also be accounted by Romanian processors’ not having had access so far to key markets outside the EU, such as Russia and China, due to restrictive sanitary rules.

Exports of snail meat of EUR2.7 million

The top of the 10 largest processed meat exporters in 2013 includes Rolux, which owns a snail plant in Hateg city, Hunedoara. The company collected, processed and exported snail meat worth EUR2.7 million last year. “Production goes entirely abroad as Romania lacks a market for such products,” explained Simona Rosu, manager of the company. France is the largest EU market for snail meat and Romanian companies delivered products worth of EUR4 million to this country last year, or 80% of exports along this line. Bioprod Avrig, with revenue of EUR0.6 million/year, also operates on this segment, and is among the top 20 exporters. Though the market of processed meat product exports has posted a ninefold increase in the past decade and hit an all-time high last year, processors’ export figures are still below the market potential. Romania ranks 10th in the EU by meat production, but in the first 11 months of last year ranked as low as 18th in terms of exports of processed meat products. Romanian exporters last year covered 92% of revenue from deliveries inside the EU and sausages made one third of exported products. Source: ZFEnglish Feb 16, 2014

 

Chamber of Deputies approves request of review of agricultural land sale bill

Bucharest, Feb 18 /Agerpres/ – On February 18, the Chamber of Deputies passed by a vote of 256 to 51 and 20 abstentions the request made by Romania’s President to review the bill on the regulation of purchases of farmland outside the development boundaries by foreigners. According to the bill passed by the deputies, the citizens and legal persons of European Union member states or of signatory states of the Agreement on the European Economic Area, and of the Swiss Confederation can purchase farm land in Romania on a mutual basis. The citizens of other states or the stateless persons residing in other countries, and the legal persons with other states’ nationality can become holders of property rights on farm land outside the development boundaries in accordance with the terms of international treaties, on a mutual basis, as stipulated by this law. ‘The alienation by sale of farm land outside the development boundaries is possible with the observance of the content and form restrictions stipulated in the Civil Code and of the pre-emption rights of co-owners, tenants, neighbouring owners, and of the Romanian State, through the State Domains Agency, in this order, at equal price and on equal terms. Farm land outside the development borders within 30 kilometres from the state border or the Black Sea coast, or within 2400 metres from special objectives can be sold and bought only subject to specific approval by the Ministry of National Defence, issued after consulting the state agencies with responsibilities in national security matters, through its specialized internal structures mentioned in paragraph 6(1) of Law 51/1991 on Romania’s national security with the subsequent amendments,’ the bill also reads. The Chamber of Deputies has the power of decision on this bill previously passed by the Senate.

Brief summary provided by the Netherlands Embassy:

Based on the request of re-examination of the Agricultural Land Sale Law made by the President of Romania, the Parliament approved on February 18 the new final version of the law. The law will be sent to the President for promulgation and then to the Official Gazette of Romania for publication.

 

One of the most important changes compared to the initial draft is that the law will apply now also to Romanian and EU legal persons, not only to individuals. Another important change is that the conditions under which an EU company/individual can buy land in Romania must be identical to the conditions which would apply to a Romanian company/individual in the EU member state of the purchaser (“reciprocity principle”).

 

Preemption rights have been preserved also in the final version of the law. The following categories of buyers have preemption rights (in this exact order): co-owners, lessees, neighbouring land owners, owners of land within the same physical block (“tarla” – a continuous piece of land delimited by permanent boundaries such as roads, rivers, dikes, etc.), and the Romanian State through the State Domains Agency ADS, at the same price and in the same conditions.

 

Also, the approval of each land transaction by either the local or central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is preserved in the final version of the law.

 

Basically, the law introduces an extensive procedure for agricultural land transactions which applies to both Romanian and EU citizens/companies.

 

Procedure

 

The land owner (seller) needs to register with the townhall a request by which he/she asks his/her land sale offer to be displayed/published so that the preemptors are thus informed + he/she will add some proof documents which will be foreseen in the implementation norms. The seller needs to attach also the list of preemptors. The townhall has to compare then this list with the records of the Agricultural Registry (handled by the townhall). Within 1 day of the registration of the seller’s request, the townhall has to display the sale offer at its headquarters (and possibly website), for 30 days. Also, within 3 days of the sale request registration, the townhall has to send to the local/central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture a file comprising: the list of preemptors, the request for publication/display of the sale offer, the sale offer and the proof documents. Then, within 3 days of the file registration, the local/central structures of the Ministry of Agriculture have to publish on their websites the sale offer for 15 days.

 

The holders of preemption rights must express in writing the acceptance of the sale offer within the 30 days in which it is publicly displayed.

 

If more preemptors of different ranks accept the offer, the seller can choose the winner (but only in the priority order provided by the law). If more preemptors of the same rank accept the offer, the seller can choose the winner.

 

If a preemptor of lower rank offers a price higher than the price stated in the sale offer or higher that the price offered by higher rank preemptors, the seller can restart the procedure (only once), for this higher price – with the higher rank preemptors.

 

If no preemptors show interest in the sale, than the sale is “free”, but still subject to this law and its implementation norms. In the end, the seller needs to inform in writing the townhall about the sale. The free sale of agricultural land at a lower price or under better conditions than the ones requested in the sale offer is forbidden and in such case the transaction is null.

 

The approval of the sale transaction is granted by the local structures of the Ministry of Agriculture for transactions of less than or equal to 30 ha, and by the central structure of the Ministry of Agriculture for transactions larger than 30 ha.

 

The law enters into force 30 days after its publication in the Official Gazette of Romania. After that, within 7 days, the implementation norms will have to be approved by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Regional Development and Public Administration, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Culture, in consultation with the National Union of Public Notaries and the National Agency for Cadastre and Land Registration.

 

The Romanian version of the law can be found on:

https://www.cdep.ro/pls/proiecte/docs/2013/pr579_13;1.pdf

 

Tourism

Romania displays its tourist products at Madrid International Tourism Fair

A Romanian delegation, made up of 25 companies operating in the tourism industry, headed by the President of the National Authority for Tourism (ANT), Razvan Filipescu, participated, from January 22 to 26, in the 4th edition of the Madrid International Tourism Fair – FITUR (Feria Internacional de TURism). Within the strategy for promoting Romanian tourism, Spain is a priority market. The figures on the number of Spanish tourists’ arrivals and overnight stays in accommodation units in Romania place Spain among the top 10 countries whose tourists visit Romania. FITUR has been the most important exhibition event dedicated to tourism in Spain since 1994. Romania’s presence in this event represents a new opportunity to unveil some of Romania’s key tourism products to relevant specialists and Spanish public, such as rural tourism, active tourism practiced in nature, city-breaks and cultural tourism.

 

Tourism with river cruise ships in Danube Delta, on the rise

Some 235 river cruise ships, a number that can be considered a record given the trend of this type of tourism in the area, will arrive this year in the Danube Delta (east) if the river’s waters remain at a navigable level. President of the Europolis group of companies, Victor Iancu told AGERPRES that so far contracts have been signed for almost 235 river cruise ships which this year will dock in the port of Tulcea and Mila 35. The ships will have aboard around 200 tourists each and will remain there for nearly 280 days. “The most passenger exchanges will be made by the river ships from Ukraine and Germany, with whose operators we have been collaborating for almost four and eight years respectively,” said Victor Iancu. Those tourists that will visit the Danube Delta will be joined by the passengers of 38 maritime cruise ships that will dock this year in Constanta and who have already expressed their wish to visit the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve. The first river cruise ships arrived in the Danube Delta in 2001. Back then only six cruise ships docked in Tulcea Port. In recent years, their number has reached over 200, with their arrivals in Tulcea Port or Mila 35 having been mainly influenced by the water level of the Danube River.

Automotive industry

National vehicle production, up 21.7%, in 2013

Romania’s national vehicle production recorded in 2013 a volume of 410,997 units, on the rise by 21.7% from the same period in 2012, according to the Association of Car Makers and Importers of Romania /APIA/. The APIA President Ernest Virgil Popovici explained in a January 28 press conference that this significant increase in the local production was due mainly to the car output, which recorded a 25.8% growth, equivalent to a volume of 410,959 units. In absolute figures, compared to 2012, by as many as 73,232 more vehicles were made last year. The highest volumes were recorded by Dacia Duster (123,213 units), followed by Dacia Sandero (119,228 units), Logan (84,050 units) and Ford B-Max (68,339 units). As far as the sales of used cars go, the APIA data show that over 266,000 units were sold in 2013, of which 221,800 cars, up by 27% from the same period a year earlier. Basically, those figures show that for every new vehicle (car + commercial vehicle) sold, other 3.8 used ones were brought to Romania. According to the APIA, as many as 362,869 cars were exported, by 9.6% more from 2012. The increase was due exclusively to cars, which recorded a plus of 13.1%. The best-exported model was Dacia Duster (118,901 units), followed by Sandero (114, 102 units), Ford B-Max (68,353) and Logan (43,373). The vehicle exports accounted for 88% of the national production in 2013.

 

Health & Pharma

 

Farmexim spends over 16 mln euros on new logistics centre

Farmexim Group has inaugurated its new logistics center in Balotesti (north-west of Bucharest, the county of Ilfov), following an investment exceeding 16 million euros, the company reported in a release sent to AGERPRES on January 28. The new central depot is equipped with last-generation technological outfits, at GDP (good distribution practice) standards, covers an area of over 15,000 square meters and has a storage capacity of over 6,000 pallets, allowing the handling of over 11,000 different items. The warehouse’s concept and the newest implemented collecting system with roller and belt conveyor will lead to a more efficient flow of operations. Also, the Warehouse Management system will allow a more professional management of all logistics operations at the national level, with high accuracy regarding traceability and control throughout the entire distribution chain, the above-quoted release reads. “We managed to build a logistics center at the highest standards, a yardstick for Romania’s pharmaceutical industry. We are sure that the new implemented facilities will improve the services we provide to our partners. In 2014 we want to maintain the same pace of development and achieve a 10 percent increase in turnover as regards our retail operations,” said Farmexim Managing Director Ovidiu Buluc. Farmexim, the top three medicine distributor in Romania, posted a gross turnover of about 1.5 billion lei (about 340 million euros) in 2013, up over 17 percent compared to 2012. In addition, the company recorded a profit higher by 50 percent compared to the previous year. Besides its financial targets, Farmexim’s main priority in 2014 is to expand the logistics centre in Timisoara. Farmexim Group, founded in 1990, includes Farmexim – import and distribution of pharmaceutical products, Help Net – national pharmacy chain, with over 150 selling points and Green Net – company importing and distributing cosmetics and food supplements. The Company forged partnerships with more than 250 national and foreign medicine makers and its portfolio numbers over 5,500 products that are supplied to 3,500 drug stores and over 400 hospitals.

 

MedLife to open four new clinics with EUR 4 million investment

MedLife, Romania’s largest private medical services provider, will open four new hyper-clinics by the end of the year, following an investment of EUR4 million, and estimates it will reach a turnover of EUR83 million. The new clinics will be open in Galati, Iasi, Constanta, and Cluj-Napoca, the company said in a press release on February 12. “Although it’s been 20 years since the start of investments in private healthcare in Romania, none of the major operators has managed to cover all historical areas, much less towns with over 250,000 inhabitants. As leaders of the private healthcare market we plan to become the first medical operator with national coverage. We have already started investments in two hyper-clinics in Galati and Iasi, which will open in the first half of the year. our investment program will continue in the second part of the year, when we plan to complete clinics in Constanta and Cluj-Napoca. We are also in advanced talks to continue expanding aggressively countrywide in the following years,” said MedLife board chairman Mihai Marcu. MedLife also plans to invest EUR2 million this year to renew equipment in its existing clinics.

The company estimates t will make an operating profit of EUR12 million this year, 20% higher than in 2013, and a turnover of EUR81 to 83 million. MedLife had a turnover of EUR72 million and an operating profit of EUR10 million in 2013. The company has been operating the Romanian private healthcare market since 1996 and has outpatient treatment units, hospitals, maternities, laboratories, and pharmacies. Source: www.zfenglish.com.

 

Dutch presence in Romania

ING Asigurari revenues up 2.8% in 2013, to RON 559.6 million

ING Asigurari de Viata subscribed premiums of RON559.6 million in 2013, up 2.8% on the year, and had an estimated pre-tax profit of RON12.1 million, from RON29 million in 2012, the insurer said on February 12, 2014. According to company data, it’s insurance portfolio last year was 7% higher than in 2012 and 73% of the policies were traditional life insurance. The value of financial assets under the insurer’s management reached RON2.5 billion, up 8% compared to 2012. ING Asigurari de Viata paid claims of RON121.7 million last year, 27.3% higher than in 2012. Nearly 78% of the claims were on contracts that reached maturity. “We ended 2013 with positive results on the life insurance and voluntary private pension segments,” general manager Marius Popescu said in a press release. ING Asigurari de Viata is the largest local insurer by 2012 revenues. The company is part of Dutch financial group ING and has been present on the Romanian market since 1997. Source: www.zfenglish.com

 

KLG Europe Logistics Romania 2013 turnover up 11%, to EUR 21 million

KLG Europe Logistics Romania had a turnover of EUR21 million in 2013, up 11% on the year, mainly driven by local and international road transport activities, the company said on January 30. The company’s road transport operations, which make up more than 35% of its business, grew 18% in 2013 and KLG gained around 350 new clients for its transport and distribution services. KLG clients include Honeywell Friction Materials, Prista Oil, and Saint-Gobain Glass Romania. The company invested EUR5 million to build a new cross dock terminal that will be a 10,000 square meter extension of its logistics platform in Bucharest. Founded in 918, Dutch group KLG Europe operates internationally via centers in the Netherlands, UK, China, Turkey, and Romania. KLG Europe provides logistics and storage, road, sea and air transport services. In Romania KLG Europe has been present since 2006 and has six distribution hubs in Bacau, Brasov, Constanta, Craiova, Cluj-Napoca and Timisoara, with a total storage capacity of over 50,000 sqm.

 

 

Events, announcements & useful web links 

 

Seminar on “The Development of the Pig Sector” – April 4, Bucharest

The Netherlands Embassy is currently working on the organisation of a seminar devoted to the development of the pig production chain, to be held in Bucharest on April 4. Dutch experts in pig technology and economics will cover subjects of high interest for the Romanian players in the pig production chain. The event will also be an opportunity for Romanian pig/pork producers to meet the various Dutch suppliers coming to Bucharest for this occasion. Also invited is a guest-delegation of Bulgarian pig/pork producers. The event is part of a series of three seminars which will take place between 31 March and 4 April in Budapest, Belgrade and Bucharest.

Dutch companies from the pig sector wishing to join the series of seminars as well as Romanian pig/pork producers willing to join the seminar in Bucharest can contact the agri section of the Embassy at BKR-LNV@minbuza.nl for more information or registration.

Join the Trade Mission to Romania lead by Minister Ploumen (22-25 April)

Romania offers lots of business opportunities for Dutch companies and knowledge institutions. A strategic location, a growing economy, a large market, skilled labour, abundant land and resources, excellent language skills, EU-funds and an ideal place for ‘nearshoring’ activities (ICT, production).

Are you interested in meeting  new business partners? Do you want to explore new business opportunities? Do you want to strengthen the ties with your existing business partners or clients, during a high-level visit?

Take this opportunity to travel with the Minister to Romania.

For more information, please see:

https://www.rvo.nl/actueel/evenementen/economische-missie-naar-roemeni%C3%AB-met-minister-lilianne-ploumen

 

National Flower Arrangement Contest – 5th edition

The organisation of the National Flower Arrangement Contest has already become a tradition for the Netherlands Embassy in Bucharest. Combined every year with a demonstration by a famous Dutch master florist, this unique event is a great opportunity for people active in the flower sector in Romania to strengthen their knowledge and improve their customer services. At the same time, it is meant to reward the talent and creativity of the Romanian florists and to promote the aesthetic education and use of flowers in our everyday life. This year’s edition will be organised in the beginning of May – more information will follow in the next newsletter. Short movies of the previous two editions are available at https://vimeo.com/65884861 and https://vimeo.com/41147290.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Economic network of the Netherlands in Romania – www.hollandtrade.ro
Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Bucharest www.netherlandsemb.ro
Netherlands Enterprise Agency – https://english.rvo.nl/
The Netherlands – Romanian Chamber of Commerce – www.netherlands.ro
The Dutch-Romanian Association www.nederland.ro
The Dutch Romanian Network www.dutchromaniannetwork.nl
Romanian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development www.madr.ro
Romanian Ministry of Economy, Trade and Business Environment www.minind.ro
Romanian Ministry of Europena Funds – www.fonduri-ue.ro/
Romanian Ministry of Public Finance – www.mfinante.ro
Romanian Ministry of Environment and Forests www.mmediu.ro
Romanian Ministry of Transport www.mt.ro
National Institute for Statistics www.insse.ro
Romania Trade & Invest – www.romtradeinvest.ro
Exhibitions in Bucharest, Romania – www.romexpo.org

 

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