COVID-19 2,676 new SARS-CoV-2 cases were reported
in Romania in the last 24 hours, out of nearly 33,000 tests conducted
nation-wide, according to the Strategic Communication Group. So far Romania has
had around 766,000 confirmed coronavirus infections. Nearly 90% of the patients
have recovered. The authorities also announced another 81 COVID-19 related
deaths, taking the death toll to over 19,500. Another 943 patients are in
PM Florin Cîţu says a “V-shaped recovery” of the Romanian economy is certain, after data made public by the National Statistics Institute for the last quarter of 2020 point to a 5.3% growth rate. He mentioned that in 2020, Romania’s economy, just like the global economy, was hit by the biggest crisis of the last century. Florin Cîţu also added that last year Romania performed 5% better than originally estimated, and 2.5% in average better than all forecasts made by international institutions, the EC, financial rating agencies and other financial institutions.
PROTESTS Representatives of the hospitality industry organise in Bucharest today new protests against the pandemic containment measures introduced by the authorities. Employers in the sector demand the payment of the promised compensations for last year, when their operations declined by 70%. In Monday’s meeting with hospitality representatives, the economy minister Claudiu Năsui promised that the government earmarked over 510 million euros for financial support in the draft budget. On Monday, members of Sanitas Union Federation picketed the Finance Ministry headquarters to warn that a smaller budget for public healthcare in a year with a coronavirus pandemic is not only an injustice to the workers in the system, but also deeply immoral to Romania’s citizens.
MOTION The Chamber of Deputies is to vote on Wednesday on the first simple motion of this legislative term, tabled by the Social Democrats in opposition against the health minister Vlad Voiculescu. The Deputies discussed the motion on Monday. The Social Democrats claim that minister Vlad Voiculescu was not sufficiently involved in the immunisation and testing programmes, and that he issued messages conflicting with the coordinators of the national vaccination campaign, discouraging the healthcare workers involved in the process. Vlad Voiculescu replied that during his 2 months in office, he earmarked close to 19 million euros for investments in hospitals.
DIPLOMACY Slovakia’s foreign minister, Ivan Korcok, is on an official visit to Bucharest today, when he has meetings scheduled with his counterpart Bogdan Aurescu and PM Florin Cîţu. According to the Foreign Ministry, the visit is a new opportunity to reconfirm the excellent bilateral relation and the continuity of the dialogue and historical ties between the 2 countries. The officials will also discuss the coordination of topics of mutual interest at EU level, such as fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, implementing the multi-annual framework and the European Recovery Plan, the Conference on the Future of Europe, the Eastern Partnership and the EU enlargement process.
TENNIS The Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, number 2 in the world, Tuesday lost in Melbourne to the American Serena Williams (no 11 WTA), 6-3, 6-3, in the eighth-finals of the Australian Open. Halep and Williams have so far had 11 matches in professional competitions, with Williams winning 9 of them. The latest match was the Wimbledon final of 2019, when the Romanian won 6-2, 6-2. In 2019, they also played against each other in the eighth-finals in Melbourne, when Williams won 6-1, 4-6, 6-4. (tr. A.M. Popescu)