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What the newspapers say: January 10, 2007

de     HotNews.ro
Miercuri, 10 ianuarie 2007, 0:00


It's rather a quiet day for the Romanian media, short on news and interested mostly in the same subjects. Dracula's castle is too expensive, although is less than half we paid for two junk British frigates. The prime minister is sure he'll keep his seat for another year, while the Justice Minister accuses him of laying off the anti corruption campaign. Same old, same old…

In a recent intervention, the officials in the Prosecutor General's Office say that the former Economy Minister, Codrut Seres, was acting as an employee of the three "spies" arrested in the "Strategic Privatizations" scandal (Evenimentul Zilei).
One of the public servants questioned in the case, Robert Neagoe, chief of the ministry's juridical office, claims that Seres asked him to assist the Bulgarians in issuing a law draft.
Several phone tapings show that the entire network of Romanian officials were "to benefit from the affair".
On the other hand, statements aren't the same in all cases. The other suspect minister in the case, Zsolt Nagy, was nothing to be heard from again since the scandal first burst. Yesterday, a piece of news in Adevarul told about how Zsolt considers to move to Brussels, to become an European Parliamentarian. Nice.

Hopefully, Europe has a better system to protect itself from corruption. Not like Bucharest, where Justice Minister Monica Macovei complains for a few days now that the anti corruption campaign is being laid off (Gandul, quoting an interview in EUObserver).

Of course, Tariceanu doesn't see it necessarily as a bad thing and is certain he'd be still prime minister a year from now (Adevarul)

Speaking of corruption: Cotidianul re-opens an old story and shows how the British at BAE Systems refuse to sign a long term support contract for two frigates Romania bought three years ago. Well, they don't refuse, but they have the demands so high up they can't be met.
What the paper fails to remind, even in a few words, is that the frigates' acquisition is currently investigated in both UK and Romania. In Romania - due to an alleged 7 million pounds commission. In UK: because the frigates were bought as scrap metal for 200,000 pounds from the Royal Navy, than sold to Romania (after some work, of course) for 116 million (!!!) pounds.

In case a rehabilitation project would have been involved, a share of the profit should be gained by the Brits, which never happened.

Not all news is bad, that's the law, so we may take some pride in the fact that Renault already develops many of its projects in Romania, despite the fact it didn't even finish building its headquarters, according to Evenimentul Zilei.
The Research and Development Centre "Renault Tehnologie Roumanie" (RTR) will handle the concept projects for markets like Romania, Slovenia, Russia, Columbia, Morocco and Iran.

Romanians aren't as poor as they seem, another piece of news unveiling that Bucharest downtown is more expensive than Paris, despite the fact that custom taxes for luxury products dropped from 42 to 13.9% (Romania Libera).

Maybe we feed on the money sent home by Romanians working abroad. It's a possibility, since the Romanian labor market faces a new crisis: both managers and workers are missing from the market.

We need simple workers, bodyguards, drivers and sales representatives as well as IT specialists (they're all in the Silicon Valley!), engineers and managers, according to Gandul.

Given this problem, Chevrolet's intention to build some of its models, as well as to assemble some Opel models in Craiova (Gandul) looks like a simple fantasy. But who knows?























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