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What the newspapers say: May 10, 2011

de A.C.     HotNews.ro
Marţi, 10 mai 2011, 10:35 English | Press Review

Part of the precautionary agreement Romania signed with the IMF is that state owned companies should be managed by foreign managers, one newspaper reads on Tuesday. Romania might return up to 1.5 billion euro of EU pre-accession funds if it does not finish projects by the end of the year. In politics today, an expensive contract with a survey institute dissatisfied PSD members across the country. The former European Capital of Culture, Sibiu is the only city in Romania to benefit from a study of the tourism phenomenon in the last ten years. Last but not least, the number of questions at the Bucharest referendum will drop to three or four.  

Romania libera reads that after years of naming directors on political grounds, the IMF demands to the government to appoint qualified managers for state owned companies drown in debt. The managers have to come from the private sector, irrespective whether they are Romanians or foreigners.  

HR expert Bogdan Belciu declared for the newspaper that qualified managers are not hard to find. He said that what will be important is the offer and work terms: new managers should be allowed to select their own team and be well paid. This is just one of the measures imposed by the IMF to the Romanian government in an attempt to decrease debts of state owned companies. 

Other measures include restructuring or the option of the state to sell a minority of shares to the private sector.  

Romania might return 1.5 billion euro of EU pre-accession funds unless it finishes its projects by the end of the year, Gandul reads quoting IMF representative Jeffrey Franks as he presented the results of the first evaluation of the precautionary agreement. 

The government has made progress in using EU funds but the progress is insufficient and efforts need to be doubled, Franks said. All these EU projects were financed through various programs before 2007 and managed by several ministries. Several projects were implemented and paid with money from the state budget but the state failed to offer documents to justify its payments and did not submit them to the EU to receive the money paid, the newspaper reads. 

In politics, Evenimentul Zilei reads about a scandal in the Social Democratic Party stirred up by the Bucharest leader’s decision to hire a very expensive survey institute. The newspaper reads that local party leaders across the country are dissatisfied with the high costs.  

The Party’s secretary general Liviu Dragnea imposed a survey institute to determine the local candidates, a former collaborator of his. The standard price is 13,000 euro plus VAT for each county a price that dissatisfied most local leaders. The newspaper reads that half the counties will use one survey institute, CSCI lead by Dan Sultanescu, a political consultant who collaborated in the past with Dragnea. 

His costs are high: 13,000 euro plus VAT per county which amounts to 533,000 euro plus VAT a contract. Plus Bucharest, where another seven surveys should be conducted. The other half of the country will be surveyed by another close friend of the Social Democrats, CSS Avangarde lead by Marius Pieleanu. 

Local PSD leaders have to respond to the request and by next Monday to pay a 50% advance payment. The announcement made by Dragnea clearly stipulates that unless surveys are not conducted by the Social Democrats, the candidates will be nominated based on the surveys made by the Liberals. 

Evenimentul Zilei reads that Sibiu, former European Capital of Culture is probably the only city in Romania to benefit from a study on the phenomenon of tourism in the last ten years. A study conducted on over 5000 tourists who visited the city in the last ten years reveals that almost three quarters of them have superior studies.  

The average mark given to the city is 8.5. The study was coordinated by Professor Ilie Rotariu, from Lucian Blaga Uniersity in Sibiu and the principles of the research were implmeneted by British Greg Richards, from the European Association for Leisure and Tourism Studies. Richards lead until now research and marketing projects in the field for cities like London, Barcelona or Luxembourg. 

In 2001 tourists offered an average of 7.5 for Sibiu’s services while in 2008 their appreciation grew to 9. For Sibiu as a tourist destination, tourists marked it on average at almost 9.2 in 2008 and to 8.8 in 2010. 

Romania libera quotes Bucharest mayor Sorin Oprescu saying that the number of questions at the Bucharest referendum will drop to three or four from seven as initially suggested. Moreover, authorities can delay the date of the referendum by one day and costs will drop substantially. Citizens in Bucharest are called to give their opinions in a referendum on the law of the capital city which organizes the administration of the capital.
























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