The Monday dailies continue to focus on the British frigates business, revealing the hidden aspects of the deal and the passive attitude of the Romanian state towards the clauses of the offset contract.
The presidential counselor Theodor Stolojan renews criticism against PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu, while controversial Sorin Ovidiu Vantu’s businesses are further revealed by journalistic investigations.
TIFF – Transilvania International Film Festival also makes its way into Monday newspapers as the great winner of three awards, the Best film, Transilvania Trophy and Public’s Choice, was a Romanian director’s movie “Was it or wasn’t it?”.
Adevarul continues to focus on the British frigates’ purchase by the Romanian state at an overrated price, a deal called by the Romanian media as the “bribe business of the frigates”. The trade accord stipulated that the British part would ensure a 100% economic compensation for Romania, a promise fulfilled only on the paper.
The off-set accord entailed that 80-90% of the trade’s value would indirectly return to Romanian industry from British investments, out of which 60% would go to the defense armament industry. Despite the current situation, the Romanian Defense Ministry does not seem to be very interested in recovering the 116 million pounds spent in 2003 on two second-hand frigates.
The Romanian authorities showed some disappointment in 2004 because of expecting the contract to pay off, but the British investors said that there was nothing to invest their money in.
The subject is scrutinized by Gandul, which takes a very critical look at the technical state of the two frigates, initially baptized as Coventry and London in the UK. Apparently, the two frigates built in 1984 are too old, too consuming and too different for the Romanian capacities and system.
The third Romanian frigate, as old as the British ones, consumes 4 tones of gas /hour, one of the main reasons the Romanian Navy needed new forces. However, the British frigates consume 30 tones /hour, as provided with four turbines. The building measures are different from the Romanian system and any minor repair entails a lot of costs and efforts to make the systems compatible.
Moreover, the maintenance costs are high and the frigates cannot be used at full capacity as too consuming.
EVZ goes on with its investigations regarding the controversial businessman Sorin Ovidiu Vantu. This time it attempts to demonstrate that SOV is behind a one billion Euros business related to the oil company Petrom, from which his right hand Liviu Luca formed a new company in February 2002 called Petromservice SA.
Petromservice SA signed a management contract with a Cyprus off-shore Comac in 2003, that was prolonged until 2012. The value of the contract reaches 1 billion Euros. Elbahold Ltd. from Nicosia purchased 49.5% of the Petromservice Shares at an underrated price. Vantu seems to have placed his business allies behind the offshore companies based in Cyprus.
The off-shore companies have represented a successful scheme employed by the businessman to make business and seem to have sustained Vantu’s businesses after the National Investment Fund, founded by Vantu, crashed and left more than 300 thousand Romanians without $ 200 million. An off-shore company based in Cyprus purchased the TV news channel Realitatea TV.
The Monday dailies also elaborate on the harsh criticism renewed by former Liberal leader Theodor Stolojan against the PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu. Romania Libera writes about Stolojan’s Sunday attack against the current Liberal leader accused of naming the Liberal ministries in the Government on friendship criteria.
Cotidianul mentions that the political war between the two liberals is now being carried on the mobile phone, via sms. Stolojan read out some sms he and other Liberals had received that accused him of staging a coup by which to take over the helm of the Government from Tariceanu. Stolojan complained of being denigrated by Tariceanu’s friends circle.
TIFF – Transilvania International Film Festival also makes way into Romanian newspapers on Monday as the great winner of three awards, the Best film, Transilvania Trophy and Public’s Choice, was Romanian director’s movie “Was it or wasn’t it?”, Corneliu Porumboiu.
Cotidianul also writes about the special guest of the festival, the British actress Vanessa Redgrave that received an award for her career and dedicated it to the members of the “Save Rosia Montana” organization.