BUSINESS
Eastern European economies to slow down in 2008 A new Erste Bank report presents the economic and capital market evolution as the economic crisis effects will diminish in the second part of 2008. According to quoted sources, the inflation in the euro zone will fall to 2% in the second part of 2008 while the EEC economies will face a slower pace of growth.
Italian businessmen discuss their future in Romania Italian businessman involved in the Unimpresa association analyze on Friday the situation of the Romanian - Italian mutual relations, The discussion will be attended to by the Italian ambassador in Bucharest, Daniele Mancini, and the Romanian Foreign Ministry state secretary, Iulian Buga.
Cheap Japanese products conquer Romanian market Top Japanese retail chain Daiso, which sells all its products at the same price has opened its first shop in Pitesti, South Romania with an initial investment of 450,000 euro, a company’s press release informs.
Carrefour to open its second hypermarket in Constanta, SE Romania Carrefour Romania rented a 6500 sq meters area in Constanta, South East Romania to open its second hypermarket in the city, a press release of the RED group informs. The market reserves some 4000 sq meters for selling facilities. The hypermarket will be open by 2009.
Soros survey: Having a house is most common wish among Romanians Some 20% of Romanians wish to own a house in the future while only 14% wish to run their own business, the Public Opinion Barometer published by the Soros Foundation on Thursday shows. According to the data, most Romanians wishing to own a house would like to build it themselves.
Group of investors buy 7% stake in BitDefender Romanian company BitDefender has sold part of its shares to a group of investors for 7 million US dollars, investors representative Horia Manda said on on Thursday. According to Manda, the value of the company is evaluated at 100 million dollars, meaning that the stake sold a little less than 7% of its shares.
Competition Council raids insurance companies Competition Council inspectors raided on Tuesday, without any previous warning, some of the players on the obligatory private pensions market, their mother-companies as well as professional associations in the field, a press released of the Council informed on Wednesday. The release doesn't mention which companies were checked.
EC investigation to affect Ford acquisition in Romania The EC investigation regarding the privatization process of the Craiova Automobile plant might postpone Ford plans to produce a new small class car model in Romania, Ford spokesperson Tom Malcolm has declared, Romanian news agency NewsIn reports. Malcolm said that depending upon the length of the investigation the company would put forward a new production plan.
Romanian Senate tacitly approves cancellation of Petrom privatization contract The Romanian Senate tacitly passed a draft law providing the grounds for the cancellation of the contract for the privatization of Petrom – the biggest Romanian oil company on Tuesday. The bill was approved without a vote as the deadline for such a vote has passed. The initiative belongs to nationalist Greater Romania Party (PRM) MPs and it further needs the approval of the Chamber of Deputies. If voted, the law will unilaterally cancel the contract attesting that the Austrian OMV company purchased Petrom in 2004.
Artists publishing on Wikipedia will be paid – Romanians and Indians targeted The foundation running the online Wikipedia encyclopedia recently decided to offer its contributors a small sum for article publishing, according to online publication The Tech. The financial payment is not offered to the thousands of people editing Wikipedia’s pages but only to the artists creating essential images for the website. The money come from a 20,000 USD donation.
Foreign analysts: Shades looming over Romanian economy Foreign analysts expect the economic perspectives of Romania to worsen in the following period, as there is a general pessimistic trend for the whole Eastern European region, an Erste Bank report shows, quoted by Romanian news agency NewsIn. Almost three quarters of analysts expect a deepening of the inflation in the following six months.
Investments in Romania economy up 29.1% to 39.36 billion Romanian RON Investments in the Romanian economy in the first nine months of 2007 amounted to 39.36 billion Romanian RON, a  29.1% increase from the similar period last year, the National Statistics Institute informs. In the third quarter of the year, the total value of the investments stood at 17.44 billion Romanian RON, 5.29 billion Romanian Ron above the value of a year ago. 
Romania youth unemployment rate is among EU highest Romania has among the highest rates in the European Union in terms of youth unemployment with 20.7% of under-25 youngsters unemployed in October this year, according to the European Statistics Institute. The only EU member state with higher unemployment rates is Greece. Overall, the unemployment rate in Romania was 7.3% in October, but grew by 0.1% as compared to a year ago.
EU pays Romania EUR 3.68 billion to improve labor market Romania will receive through the European Social Fund (ESF) co-financing worth 3.68 billion euro in order to create new jobs and to improve the existing ones, an European Commission press release informs on Thursday. The programs involved in the project refer to improving personal skills, improving public services and creating a more efficient and effective public administration in the country.
Russian giant Mechel - third asset in Romania Russian company Mechel intends to open a third production facility in Romania, buying a local ferro concrete and ironware company, Ductil Steel. Russian experts evaluate the transaction at 45-55 million dollars. Mechel, having its own general manager, Igor Ziuzin, as main shareholder (68.2% of the stock) already submitted the documentation for approval to the Romanian Competition Council, asking to acquire the control stock at Ductil Steel, 50% + 1 share. 
Romania central bank: firms consumers contracting still more loans Credits to companies and individuals in Romania rose by 51% in October this year as compared to a year ago reaching 113.3 billion Romanian lei, Romanian central bank BNR has announced. The BNR also says that the A3 aggregate kept rising last month, a trend also seen when it comes to individual national and foreign currency deposits.
Romania last in Europe in terms of ATM number Romania and Poland are last in Europe when it comes to the number of ATMs, Eurostat informs. The Romanian market offers only 20 ATMs per 100,000 inhabitants, while the number grows to 125 in market leader Spain.
Petrom 2007 budget review approved despite challenge The shareholders board of Romanian oil group Petrom aproved on Tuesday a review of the 2007 budget of the company despite the Athority of State Assets Recovery (AVAS) had announced it would oppose the proposal, sources close to the meeting told Romanian news agency NewsIn. AVAS, a government-controlled body, holds a 21% stake in Petrom, a company controlled by Austrian group OMV.
Romania - last in Europe in terms of mobile connections The number of mobile telephony subscriptions per hundred of inhabitants rose almost 14 times in EU member countries during 1996-2005. Romania was among the last European countries by the end of 2005, according to newly released Eurostat data, with 62 mobile telephony subscriptions per thousand inhabitants. In terms of wired telephony, it was also placed last, with 20 lines per hundred inhabitants in 2005.
Business weekly: Rompetrol boss Dinu Patriciu is richest man in Romania Romanian businessman Dinu Patriciu is the richest man in Romania, according to the latest issue of a yearly list of wealthiest people in the country published by Romanian business weekly Capital this week. Patriciu leaped from eighth to first place in the Capital chart following his selling of a majority stake in Rompetrol, the second-biggest oil group in Romania, to Kazakh group KazMunayGaz in August this year.

ESRI

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