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MAY 10 - On May 10, Romania celebrates Independence Day, the day Romania obtained its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1877 at the end of the Russian-Ottoman war. On this occasion, president Klaus Iohannis said independence is one of the pillars of the Romanian modern state, while celebrating Independence Day is a suitable opportunity to commemorate the milestones that helped create the Romanian nation. Also today Romania marks Monarchy Day, which was the National Day of Romania from 1866 to 1947. May 10 marks the start of the 48-year-long rule of Charles I of Hohenzollern Sigmaringen, the first in a dynasty of four kings. The Royal Train is today on a symbolic tour of the country to mark this event. The train was first used by the Royal House of Romania in 1928. May 10 also marks Balkan Romanianness Day. In 2021, president Klaus Iohannis ratified a law establishing this day as a public holiday. The event seeks to raise public awareness regarding national and cultural solidarity with the Megleno-Romanians and Aromanians living in Balkan countries. Over the years, Bucharest authorities have provided support to Romanian schools and churches in the Balkans by means of various programs and funding projects.
BANKING - The National Bank of Romania is expected to increase the monetary policy interest rate from 3% to 4%. This is a substantial increase determined by inflation, which has now reached the highest levels of the last decade. The last time the Central Bank increased the monetary policy interest rate by 1% was in February 2008. The Bank thus follows a wider regional trend, considering that the monetary policy rate is closing in on 6% in Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary. Commercial banks will next increase their interest rates in order to discourage loan-taking and diminish consumption.
EBRD - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has lowered its estimate regarding Romania's economic growth in 2022 and 2023, after an economic recovery of 5.9% reported in 2021, determined mainly by private consumption, an EBRD reports reads. Romania's economy is expected to grow by 2.5% this year compared to the original forecast of 2.8% issued in March, and by 3% next year, compared to the previous estimate of 4.1%. The EBRD also believes that Romanian economy was weakened in 2022, the GDP reporting a slump of 0.1% in the last quarter of 2021.
EXERCISES - The "Getica" Training Center in Cincu is today hosting the opening ceremony of Resolute Castle 22, a multinational exercise involving the participation of military engineers with Romanian Land Forces and structures of the US Land Forces Command for Europe and Africa and the British Ministry of Defense, the Romanian Ministry of Defense reports. The purpose of Resolute Castle 22 is to increase the level of interoperability means of constant training and implementing innovative solutions to joint engineering problems. Also starting today, the village of Comăneşti in Bacău County is hosting a multinational military exercise the will unfold over the course of five days, involving military personnel and equipment of the Romanian Defense Ministry and NATO.
GOVERNMENT - The Government on Monday adopted the disbursement of meal vouchers to people with low income. The 50-meal vouchers will be paid on special cards once a month. Cards will be distributed starting June 1. The measure is backed with non-reimbursable EU funds. Also on Monday, the Government adopted measures to boost investment, such as adjusting prices for construction materials for ongoing projects funded by the EU.
REFUGEES - Approximately 900 thousand Ukrainian refugees have entered Romania since the start of the war in neighboring Ukraine, the Border Police announced. On Monday some 5,530 Ukrainian citizens entered the country (down by 27.9% compared to the previous day). The border police has deployed additional units to the border areas, working together with other institutions with a view to sharing data and information and taking joint action.
EUROVISION - The first semi-final of the 66th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is held tonight in Turin. This is the third edition of Eurovision hosted by Italy, after the ones held in Naples in 1965 and Rome in 1991. The first 10 best-ranked countries will advance to Saturday's final. Romania's representative, WRS, will perform the song "Llámameˮ in the second semi-final on Thursday. Romania's best ranking in the Eurovision Song Contest was third place in 2006 in Kyiv and in 2010 in Oslo (Luminiţa Anghel & Sistem; Paula Seling & Ovi) and fourth place in Athens in 2006 (Mihai Trăistariu).
CHESS - The best-ranked Romanian chess player, Bogdan Deac, world no. 59, drew against Iranian-born French player Alireza Firouzja, world no. 2, in the fifth round of the Superbet Chess Classic Romania 2022 on Monday. Tuesday is a rest day, while tomorrow matches will resume as part of round 6. Superbet Chess Classic romania 2022 is the first of the five-stage edition of this year's Grand Chess Tour, being held over May 5-15. Total prizes stand at some $350,000. (VP)
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