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What the newspapers say: May 5, 2008

de A.C.     HotNews.ro
Luni, 5 mai 2008, 7:37 English | Press Review

Romanian Embassies work without an accountant and money seem to disappear without a trace, one newspaper reads on Monday. More in the news, the Foreign minister talks about Romania's foreign affairs strategy and his controversial past. Locally, Liberals cut Democrat Liberals' influence in the Agricultural Payment Agency (APIA) which manages some 500 million euro. 

Gandul reads about the lack of accounting reports in Romanian Embassies where money seems to endlessly flow in a black hole. A 2006 report shows that Romanian Embassies fail to justify in any way the money they spend. Moreover, money spent does not reflect the reality of embassy activities in various countries.

The report urges Foreign Affairs officials to take serious measures to counter this situation where over the years has become almost impossible to track the money flow. According to the document, Foreign Affairs ministers did not have any incentive to clear up this situation.

Sources within the Ministry admit the signaled problems but say that the situation has improved over the years. Plus, Ministry officials blame the Finance Ministry for its inability to push for a foreign accounting program.

In the same vein, Romania's new Foreign Affairs minister Lazar Comanescu talks about his controversial past and the future strategies of the Ministry in an interview for Romania libera. Comanescu said his past is currently irrelevant, and that his professional skills should matter most.

He added that Romania's foreign affairs strategy should lack any political color and be considered in terms of Romania's greater interests. Therefore, Comanescu declared that, in his quality as Romania's EU and NATO main negotiator he proved his skills as a good diplomat.

Last but not least, Cotidianul reads that governing Liberals pull out the strings of Democrat Liberals to access and manage the 500 million euro funds available through the Agricultural Payments Agency (APIA). The newspaper informs that Liberals plan to dismiss all county directors of the Agency due to their previous political affiliation.

At their turn, county directors say that once the official electoral alliance of Liberals and Democrats formed in 2004 dismantled, they became public servants. Therefore, they declare that their previous political affiliation should not matter.

Interviewed county directors say they are disappointed because their performance is not taken into account. Some said they will prepare for the exam in order to re-occupy the position while others refused to try their chances again.
























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