"There is no income in Romania that should not be taxed. I hope that the Government will not come with a new VAT increase, but with the decision to tax all salaries, including pensions, like any civilised country", Romanian President Traian Basescu declared for the national radio station. The chief of state warned that if 20-25% of the white-collar workers were not to be sacked, the rest of the salaries in the public sector are going to stay reduced after January 1, 2011.
According to Basescu, ministers have time until the first day of the next year to come up with a plan to reduce a fifth or a quarter of employees working in the public sector in their niche. He said that he believes there could be cases of fraud addressing impairment retirements. 3,000 out of 12,000 such files have been sent to re-examination.
He accused parents who refused to go to work and lived out of the child's benefits. "It is a deep poverty, but also a deep lack of work", the President say, adding that "Some don't have tonsils and retired due to illness", he claims.
All states in the world have unemployed, no state can offer everything. (...) People in agriculture do not employ daily workers for the work. People from the rural areas are content with the minimum income or social benefit. We can't go on like this, because we are out of resources. We can't go on like this, if we don't want to destroy the country. I don't feel I am the only one responsible for the state's fate. All 22 million Romanians are responsible.
Basescu also mentioned the likelihood of a new IMF agreement. He claims he was not partisan with the measure to increase the VAT and said he hoped to see it dropping to 19%.
On the Romanian Constitutional Court's (CCR) verdict that the cut in pensions was unconstitutional, the President said: "I don't usually comment on CCR's decisions, but the decision regarding the unconstitutionality of cutting pensions, it was a political approach, not a constitutional one.
"If we take another loan, this is the solution to destroy Romania's future. I would agree to borrow again in 2011 only if all money is allocated to development."