POLITICS
EC: Public authorities should respect a period of maximum 30 days for SME payments The European Commission responded to the observations formulated by the European Economic and Social Council Committee (CESE) regarding the new version of the Order tackling delayed payments which is going to be voted in the beginning of July. "The commissions share the Committee's point of view that short and compulsory payment deadlines to be applied to al public authorities on all levels. Additionally, taking into consideration the current climate, where the SMEs face serious problems with cash flow and restricted access to credits, public authorities should respect a maximum period of 30 days for payments towards SMEs", A communiqué sent by the Commission to the European Economic and Social Committee at the end of last week and cited by the National Council for SME from Romania. 
Romanian LibDem MEP: For two weeks the Government is not taking any anti-crisis measures Romanian Liberal-Democratic MEP Cristian Preda asked the Boc Cabinet to consult the opposition regarding anti-crisis measures. He told RFI reporters that for two weeks now, the Romanian "Government is not doing anything" in terms of anti-crisis measures. Preda said that so far, The Government and PDL's communication was "silence", while other cases, the communication managed to rob the anti-crisis measures of credibility. 
BNR chief-economist: Public sector employees should have one week unpaid holiday per month Romanian Central Bank (BNR) chief-economist Valentin Lazea says he does not agree to cut salaries by 25%. He proposes that public sector staff is given one week unpaid holiday every month, Romanian news agency Mediafax informs. 
BNR governor: We had 800,000 state employees in 1990 and the State worked. Now we've got 1.4 mln and we ask where the problem is "It has always been said: we've got money for pensions, but there weren't. BNR [Romania's central Bank] has permanently warned that all increases in salaries have been above productivity and that, sooner or later, it will be time for collection", BNR Governor Mugur Isarescu said during a niche seminar. Regarding salaries in the public sector, BNR's message is clear: "In 1990, the State worked with less than a million state employees. They were around 800,000, including those in the Central Committee. 20 years after, we've got 1.4 millions and we ask ourselves where the problem is.
Hungarian party leader: UDMR is not backing the cut in small pensions Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania (UDMR) President Marko Bela declared on Tuesday that his party dies not agree for the 15% cut in pensions to be applied to small pensions as well. 
Finance minister: Reducing salary fund by 25% would not bring the saving we need. It is necessary to cut individual state-supported incomes by 25%
Romanian Finance minister Sebastian Vladescu declared that reducing the salary fund would not bring the saving that Romania needs at the moment. Therefore it is necessary to cut individual state-supported salary by 25% each, he argued for TV channel Antena 3.
Economy minister on pay cuts: We should all show solidarity "We should all show solidarity", the Romanian Economy minister Adriean Videanu declared, referring to the possible cut in salaries in the state sector and state companies. He said the Finance Ministry should find a solution in this sense. "From the point of view of IMF negotiations, this issue [cutting the salaries' fund by 25%] addresses strictly those in the public sector. But I think we should all show solidarity and make an effort in this sense. But probably the Finance Ministry will find a solution on this perspective", Videanu said. 
UPDATE Marmosim, the company where the economy minister owns majority of shares, gives up applying for European funds UPDATE Marmosim, the companies that processes marble, with the largest share package owned by Romanian Economy minister Adriean Videanu, gives up applying for European funds, Videanu announces. The decision was taken after critics in the press. Videanu said to wanted to avoid any critique. "Think about the objectivity, in quotation marks, on this issue", the minister added.
PNL leader announces his party will not take part in the meeting with the President National Liberal party (PNL) President Crin Antonescu announced on Tuesday that the liberals will not take part in the meeting with President Traian Basescu, Government representatives, parties, unions and patronages reps in the Parliament. "From now on, we will not take part in any discussions with Traian Basescu and Emil Boc [PM]", he said.
President Traian Basescu and PM Boc to meet with Parliamentarian groups President Traian Basescu and PM Emil Boc will meet on Monday at 1PM with all Parliamentarian groups, including the independents, Romanian news agency Agerpres informs. The main issue on the agenda is the country's economic situation.
Romanian Government stresses the deficit will stay below 7% Romania is going to keep the budget deficit below 7%, Government's spokeswoman Ioana Muntean declared on Friday, May 7. According to her, Finance minister Sebastian Vladescu and PM Emil Boc "are currently working together to finalise the intention letter for the stand-by agreement with the International Monetary Fund", based on the measures announced by President Basescu.
Executive sets up groups for car tax and development The Romanian Government listened to PM Emil Boc's request and set up a inter-ministerial working group to analyse the car pollution tax, according to the Government's spokeswoman Ioana Muntean. There was another inter-ministerial group formed to develop the electrical car in Romania. Part of the second group are Economy Ministry reps, and specialists Transport, Finance and Environment ministries and from the National Authority for Scientific Research. 
President Traian Basescu holds consultations with parliamentary parties on draft ANI law Romanian President Traian Basescu started consultations with representatives of parliamentary parties on Monday afternoon on the situation of the National Integrity Agency - ANI, a key anti-corruption body the existence of which came under threat when the Constitutional Court stripped it of some of its most relevant powers. The talks come shortly after the Government approved in a special session a draft law for the continuation of ANI activities.
President Basescu calls for talks with political parties over National Integrity Agency Romanian President Traian Basescu invited parliamentary parties for talks at the Presidency HQ on Monday over the situation caused by a Constitutional Court decision stripping key powers from the National Integrity Agency (ANI) - the main body keeping the wealth of public officials under supervision.
Democratic-liberal star candidate Teo Trandafir winner in elections for Parliament seat in Bucharest on Sunday Democratic Liberal (PDL) candidate Teo Trandafir, well known to Romanians for her TV shows over the past decade, won the poll for a seat in the Romanian Parliament on Sunday, defeating rival candidate Liliana Minca of Social Democrats-Conservatives (PSD-PC) with 53.59% of the votes to 46.41%. Minca acknowledged Trandafir's victory in the Sunday elections - only 14.65% of the voters in the constituency showed up to vote.
Three of nine Constitutional Court judges made different opinion in National Integrity Agency case Three of the nine judges of Romania's Constitutional Court which decided April 14 that several key articles of the law on the functionality of the National Integrity Agency (ANI) - the main body checking the wealth of public officials - were unconstitutional voted against the decision.
Draft changes to Romania Constitution include articles regulating NATO and EU accession - an aim accomplished back in 2004 and 2007 respectively Draft changes to the Constitution, which were presented by Romania's PM Emil Boc on Wednesday, include small changes to two articles which would have normally be removed from the fundamental law: one on how the Parliament approves Romania's EU accession and another related to the NATO accession. Romania has been a member of the EU since 2007 and joined NATO in 2004, so articles 148 and 149 of the Constition should have simply be removed, according to constitutional experts.
Romanian President demands Government to pay debts to private companies Talks between Romanian President Traian Basescu and members of the Government on Tuesday focused on urgent "reform measures", according to a Presidency announcement. The issues discussed included cutting public spending and the process of decentralisation. A press release of the Presidency shows that the head of state underlined the need that state debt to private companies be paid.
Romanian PM accuses opposition Liberal party of using money from bank privatisation in electoral campaign Romanian prime minister Emil Boc claimed in a speech in the Romanian Senate on Tuesday that the opposition National Liberal Party - PNL "ate up" money from the privatisation of the Romanian Commercial Bank - BCR in its own electoral campaign, Romanian news agency Mediafax reports.
Romanian president Basescu says integrity body was almost dismantled in a move against Romania's interest The National Agency of Integrity (ANI) - a body supervising the wealth statements of public officials - was almost dismantled by a decision of the Constitutional Court which pleased some but was against the interest of Romania, President Traian Basescu said on Tuesday.

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