Romania’s Prime Minister plans to reorganize the country in regions after eight years of debates on the issue for the sake of EU funds. The opposition’s coalition, USL is heading to trouble as local leaders of the two parties compete to be elected USL candidates for the upcoming 2012 elections. Elsewhere in the news, one newspaper gives out four reasons for which Romania has expensive and bad roads. Romania and Bulgaria’s adhesion to Schengen might take years. Famous Japanese theatre company Yamanote Jijosha performs in Bucharest.
Gandul reads that EU funds promised by the Development ministry lead by Elena Udrea to PDL mayors condition PM Boc to another test in the Parliament. The replacement of counties in regions becomes now, the main priority of the government after eight years of debates and postpones.
The newspaper reads that Boc was given one month to finish the draft law re-organizing the administrative structure of the country. The stakes are high: 10 billion euro from EU funds which Romania can benefit from in 2013 – 2014. The condition from Brussels is to have Romania organized in regions with a judicial status.
So far, this discussion has been postponed for pragmatic reasons: if the government gives up the counties, county councils will also disappear while prefects will be transferred to the new structures which mean hundreds of positions in the administration lost and diminishing the influence of current county council presidents.
PDL sources said Boc will take responsibility for the draft law in the Parliament, as he needs to have the law passed by the end of the parliamentary session. However, the biggest problem is with the Hungarian Democrats, allies with Democratic Liberals. UDMR presented its own vision on administrative reorganization in which the counties dominated by the Hungarian minority become a region, reunited under the same authority.
Elsewhere in the news, Evenimentul Zilei reads about the troubles in the opposition camp, the Social Liberal Union reuniting the Social Democrats and Liberals as the two big parties started internal surveys across the country to see which candidates it will put forward on the common list.
The rule is that the local candidate with most votes from the locals gets to be the USL candidate. However, in practice, local leaders are far from united on this matter since the competition has started. Scandals started to sprang out across the country, with Liberal leaders claiming that survey operators were taken by their local PSD opponent by car in certain villages where the latter is well viewed.
It is not the first time when the two camps have dissensions on candidates.
Romania libera give out four reasons for which Romania has expensive and bad roads. The first is that the big European contractors stay far away from the country which maintains high prices at public tenders. The second reason is the bureaucracy that companies need to face: the local constructions market is not very flexible. The third reason, the newspaper reads quoting a EU report is the lack of training of those in the government.
There is a lack of expertise in the projects which leads to problems with cost estimations, and risk managements. The last reason is inflation, increasing salaries and the exchange rate. The newspaper reads that the cost of labour force in constructions increased over the cost of works per se.
Gandul quotes Financial Times that quotes diplomatic sources who claim that Romania and Bulgaria’s adhesion to Schengen will be a matter of years than months because there is no trust in judicial institutions. Diplomatic sources said perspectives are getting slimmer as the governments of the two EU member states insist to improve the judiciary and push the fight against corruption.
Recently, Dutch Foreign Affairs Minister Uri Rosenthal said that the EU needs to be sure that reforms are irreversible through a monitoring system. President Basescu on the other hand is optimistic and said Romania and Bulgaria might join Schengen by the end of the year despite objections raised by France and Germany.
European diplomats warned that several big states condition the acceptance in Schengen on serious judicial reforms.
Romania libera reads about the famous Japanese theatre company, Ymanote Jijosha that will present a play in Bucharest, at Odeon Theatre. The company is well appreciated in Japan since it was created in 1984. It is known for the special training of its actors, through the Yamanote method and Yojo han style that aim at developing dialogue techniques to improve the body expression.