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Romanian Government tells IMF: Unemployment remains high in 2010, but GDP increase is possible in Q1

de Carla Dinu, transl/adapt. C.B.
Miercuri, 24 februarie 2010, 11:49 English | Politics

The unemployment in Romania remains high throughout 2010 and the economic pressures that stress companies and the population will continue to burden the banks' balance sheets. But there are signs that the economic activity is rehabilitating and the economic increase could be recorded as soon as the first quarter of the year.

The estimates on the macroeconomic framework for 2010 are included in the intention letter to the stand-by agreement with the IMF, a document that Romanian news agency Mediafax obtained.

"The main macroeconomic variables are increasing month to month and we expect the economic growth to turn positive in Q1 of 2010. For the entire 2010, the economic growth is expected to go up to 1.3%, reflecting especially the rehabilitation of the external markets. Nevertheless, unemployment will remain high and the economic pressures that stress companies and households will continue to burden the banks' balance sheets", the document shows.

The Government also underlines that despite the severe recession, the inflation remained quite high, namely 4.7%, slightly above the high margin of the target inflation set by the Romanian National Bank (BNR), as a consequence of the impact of increased duties and prices for fuels. But a drop in inflation is anticipated for the current year, to approximately 3.5%, achieved through a prudent monetary policy.

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