CORONAVIRUS IN ROMANIA - The death toll for the coronavirus in Romania has reached 182. According to the Group for Strategic Communication, the confirmed number of infected stood at 4,417 people, including 10 babies at a maternity hospital in Timisoara, western Romania. 631 Romanians living abroad have tested positive for coronavirus and 29 have died. In another development, a cargo aircraft arrived in Bucharest from China earlier today, bringing 200,000 ICU protective gowns, 20,000 medical visors and 500,000 pairs of gloves.
CORONAVIRUS WORLDWIDE - Nearly 1.4 million people worldwide have contracted the coronavirus and over 74,000 have died to the virus. Overall, 277,000 people have recovered. Among the thousands of patients who are now in intensive care is also Great Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, whose condition deteriorated yesterday. The British official was admitted on Sunday, 10 days after being officially diagnosed as infected with COVID-19. France has reported a record-high daily death toll, 833, taking the total number of deaths to 8,900 since the start of the outbreak. The most affected in Europe remain Italy, with 16,500 deaths and Spain, with 13,500 deaths. The United States remains the most affected country in the world, with close to 11,000 deaths and over 365 thousand infections. China for the first time since the start of the pandemic has reported no fatalities. While most states around the world have extended the period when restrictions remain in place to prevent the coronavirus from spreading, Austria, Germany, the Czech Republic and Denmark announced they would ease restrictions starting April 15.
REPATRIATION - A group of 92 Romanians has been repatriated on Tuesday morning from Saudi Arabia, the Foreign Ministry reports. The action is part of a series of undertakings to facilitate the repatriation of Romanian nationals living abroad who have been affected by measures adopted in other states in the context of combating the COVID-19 pandemic. 3 Bulgarian citizens were transported during the same flight who then continued their trip to neighboring Bulgaria. The Foreign Ministry has again called on Romanians living or residing abroad to fully comply with the recommendations of local authorities, recommending they avoid travelling to Romania during this period.
ELECTIONS - The Government has passed an emergency decree extending the term of local officials until December 31. Slated for June, local elections have been postponed due to the coronavirus crisis. Political sources say several variants are being discussed to reschedule the election for September or October. Legislative elections might be held concurrently with local elections or at a closer date. An announcement will be made after consultations with political parties.
GDP - Romania's GDP went up by 4.1% in 2019 compared to the previous year, standing at some 220 billion euros, the National Statistics Institute reported today. The estimated GDP growth for the fourth quarter of 2019 was by 1.5% higher than in the third quarter, and by 4.2% higher than the similar period of 2018. The top growth-driving sectors were constructions, retail and wholesale trade, automobile and motorcycle repair services, transports and storage, the hospitality sector and restaurant services.
WHD 2020 - Every life saved matters, Health Minister Nelu Tataru said earlier today to mark World Health Day, celebrating the work of medical staff around the world. According to the Romanian official, healthcare personnel has always known how to mobilize and muster up strength when needed. "It is the most difficult 7th of April of recent years, but I am confident that together we will overcome this challenge", Nelu Tataru went on to say. The Romanian Health Minister says the authorities want to put patients at the core of the healthcare system. Patients are entitled to the latest treatments in the field, the same as those provided everywhere in Europe, while physicians deserve working conditions similar to those ensured in the world's developed nations, Minister Tataru added.
(Translated by V. Palcu)