Scheduled talks between President Traian Basescu and the leaders of parliamentary parties draw considerable interest among Romanian newspapers today as they search for a meaning behind the event. One such meaning, some papers seem to agree, is the search for a new government to replace the one currently led by Calin Popescu Tariceanu.

Newspapers today also discuss Liberal practices in the government as well as Italian and Swiss maneuvers that may come at the expense of Romanians.

Talks at the Presidency today, bringing President Basescu face to face with the leaders of political parties in the Parliament, must be read as a move to change the current government with one where the opposition Social Democrats (PSD) would have a say, according to Cotidianul.

The key to the talks today is what the PSD plans to discuss, according to statements made by PSD leader Mircea Geoana over the weekend, the paper writes.

According to Geoana, the possibilities for a new government include one led by PM Tariceanu’s Liberals, but in a renewed version, a government run by ex-Liberal leader Theodor Stolojan, now a supporter of Basescu, one by National Bank governor Mugur Isarescu or one run by Mircea Geoana himself.

Gandul writes that Geoana already seems himself the head of a government that would run the country for a year and prepare the early elections next year. Still, according to the newspaper, the responsibility for a government change must fall on negotiations between the head of state and the political parties, as Geoana put it.

Evenimentul Zilei reports that PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu competes with the Presidency as he also called for talks with political parties at the Government HQ once the negotiations with the head of state are over.

And Romania libera writes that Tariceanu is already entering a period of electoral campaign as he announced this weekend that visits will take place across the country where he and other party leaders would listen to the troubles of the people.

The move, according to Romania libera, is prompted by the Liberals’ failure to remove Basescu from office in a May 19 referendum. A referendum that - Cotidianul writes today - is presented by Basescu as “the will of God”.

He made the statement at an Orthodox service at a cathedral in Sibiu over the weekend. The newspaper quotes a political scientist, Cristian Pirvulescu, who says such statements belong to “another era”, that of the Middle Ages.

Meanwhile, Cotidianul writes that the new, Liberal Transports minister Ludovic Orban has a new record - that of managers dismissed from institutions in his subordination, since taking over the Transport portfolio from a Democrat in the government reshuffle this spring.

According to the newspaper, Orban managed to dismiss 11 managers in 40 days. The last two of them had to go this weekend: the head of Romanian airline company Tarom and the Romanian Car Registry. Most offices were passed to members of Orban’s Liberal party, the paper writes.

Meanwhile, Evenimentul Zilei turns its eyes on Italy: government officials from Rome are due to discuss in Bucharest on Tuesday the possibility of transporting thousands of tons of waste to Romania. The waste has sparked a serious environmental crisis in south Italy for several weeks.

Also in the newspapers today:

  • Evenimentul Zilei reports that dozens of Romanian firms say they’ve been cheated by Swiss company Intercable Verlag AG, which had them sign contracts which were handed away as simple application forms.

    According to the newspaper, the Swiss company is investigated for fraud as it earns millions of euro annually following “tricks” to mislead thousands of companies across Europe.
  • Romania libera quotes British newspaper The Sunday People according to which the trade with babies is thriving in Romania, where one can easily buy a baby from poor families at a price of about 3,000 euro, “no questions asked”.
  • Cotidianul reports that the Government Control Body has discovered irregularities in fuel procurement activities at the Turceni Energy Complex, at the benefit of a company belonging to the Rompetrol group, run by controversial oil mogul Dinu Patriciu.
  • And Gandul writes that a Romanian was killed by colleagues in Italy because he was working too much. Two colleagues shot the Romanian - who was working at the stables of a tourism cabin in Pardu, Western Sardinia - dead because they felt the man was threatening their jobs with his hard work, according to the paper.