Top bankers in Romania discuss the country's economic crisis in terms of an international snowballing effect, one newspaper reads on Monday. Also in the news today, Romania's Conservative Party elected the first woman for party leadership, Daniela Popa. Last but not least, European Commission officials criticize Romania's justice system for locking up high corruption cases.

Cotidianul quotes several important bankers in Romania discussing about the country's economic crisis and its future prospects. Romanian Commercial Bank CEO Manfred Wimmer argues that Romania's economic growth indexes are continuing to increase for 2008 but foreign financing costs will increase as well.

He says Romania goes through a snowballing effect just as other regional countries due to the international market troubles. However, Wimmer is confident that Romania will slowly recover by summer time.

BRD-SocGen head Patrick Gelin says that local macroeconomics determine in general terms the economy's reaction to the international environment. The crisis and its deepening depends solely on the American market since it has direct consequences upon European economies.

UniCredit Tiriac President Dan Pascariu however does not agree with Gelin and argues that the international market cannot have a direct effect upon Romania since no major European bank in the country has been significantly affected by the crisis. Moreover, he says that the subprime crisis in the US is over and a recovery depends on the market and its upcoming reaction.

Gandul reads about the first woman elected as president of the small but so far influential Conservative Party (PC) in Romania. However, the new breakthrough was shadowed by hundreds of party delegates who were very nervous and refused the accept the final results that had the politician they supported, Florin Anghel, lose the vote.

Party members refused to stay cool even when party founder Voiculescu tried to calm down the spirits. In a sign of protest, half of party members left the room and took their sorrows in the hallways.

It seems that the 1,500 Conservative members present at the reunion were split into half in sustaining Daniela Popa and Florin Anghel. However, Daniela Popa managed to get the support of the majority as she was sustained by the Party's founder, politician-businessman Dan Voiculescu.

Elsewhere in the news, European Commission officials criticizes Romania's justice system for locking up high corruption cases, Romania libera writes, quoting news agency Newsin. Moreover, the Commission threatens Romania with the activation of the safeguarding clause for justice if the system is not uphold in its reform process.

Brussels officials argue there is a clear regression in the field of justice since the last report from June 2007, when anti-graft prosecutors were appreciated for their commitment and professionalism.

It is not easy to point fingers, as EC officials will always find arguments to portray the Romanian politicians lack of concern regarding reform in various sectors, political analyst Cristian Parvulescu declared, quoted by Romania libera.

Romania's Academic Society anti-corruption coordinator Laura Stefan argues that the reaction of the European Commission is at least concerning and further sustains that Romanian politicians need to take responsibility for their lack of action.