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What the newspapers say: November 19, 2008

de A.C.
Miercuri, 19 noiembrie 2008, 3:05 English | Press Review

All newspapers on Wednesday read about Romania President Traian Basescu's stated plan to replace his Volkswagen vehicle with a Dacia model, to support Dacia factories redress. Elsewhere in the news, Ukrainians approve a bill ruling the creation of a free economic area on the Serpent's Island. Last but not least, Interior minister Cristian David was accused of drug usage.

Evenimentul Zilei reads that starting tomorrow, Romanian President Traian Basescu will replace his Volkswagen car with a Dacia model, in order to support Dacia factories to redress. The decision was taken after the meeting Basescu had with Ford factory officials and representatives of Dacia, Romania's traditional car model.

President Basescu declared that the economic crisis is not generated by Romania but by Europe where the economy is in recession. He added that 80% of the country's production is exported to European countries and thus Romania will have to bear the consequences of the recession as imports decrease.

Basescu thus announced that starting tomorrow he would only use a Dacia car and would only purchase Romanian food products in order to support Romania's economy.

Gandul informs that other political leaders refuse to take the example of the president. Thus, Democrat Liberal Vasile Blaga declared that he would not give up his BMW because it looks too good. What's more, even if Social Democratic Party (PSD) head Mircea Geoana declared that he would support a bill ruling that all Parliamentarians should drive a Dacia car, he uses an Audi A6 model.

The newspaper reads that most politicians agree, in principle, with President Basescu but they are not ready to give up the luxury cars they drive. However, most of them declared that they would only purchase Romanian products.

Cotidianul reads that Basescu's decision to drive a Dacia car poses some serious problems for the Security forces guarding the President. Captain Bogdan Onea declared that security measures would be adapted considering the route chosen, the area, hour and traffic conditions.

However, security experts declare that the Dacia model would not be able to offer the minimum security conditions stipulated in international norms and regulations. They argue that the cars need to have minimum technical capacity which Dacia does not possess.

Elsewhere in the news, Ukrainians passed a bill ruling the creation of a new free trade area in the Serpent's Island, Cotidianul informs. The free trade area will bear the name of Ahilia, news agency Mediafax informs quoting the Ukrainian news agency Ukrinform. The name comes from the legend circulating in the country that Achilles is buried there.

According to the Ukrainian government, the creation of the free trade area would attract new investments and determine the development of tourism infrastructure. Moreover, local politicians declared that the project will also facilitate the archeological research of the area.

According to data ,the project will attract some 4 million euro in investments in the first 10 years. However, the bill must also pass in the Parliament. In January 2006, Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko signed a decree transforming the Serpent's Island in a fiscal paradise. The Ukrainian press read that the president was not only to create the appearance that the island is inhabited, but also to hide some of his protegees.

Last but not least, Interior minister Cristian David is accused of consuming drugs in 1995 when police found high risk drugs in his apartment, Romania libera reads. David did not reject the information and declared that he did not know what he told the prosecutors at the moment.

However, he declared that the apartment where he allegedly came in contact with drugs was owned by his girlfriend back then. When prompted by the press David declared that he did not try the drugs but admitted that he assisted his friends.

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