After two days of intense debate, Romanian MPs endorsed the 2021 state and social security budget
On Tuesday, Romania's Parliament adopted the 2021 state and social security budget in the form proposed by the Government. This is the first state budget that was not altered in Parliament, with the coalition managing to reject all the amendments proposed by the opposition. Representatives of the National Liberal Party, the Save Romania Union - PLUS Alliance and the Democratic Union of Ethnic Hungarians in Romania, which make up the governing coalition, have described the 2021 budget as balanced, based on sustainability, political responsibility and economic growth.
Prime Minister Florin Cîţu has stated that this budget marks the beginning of Romania's reconstruction, but this can be done only by reforming the administrative apparatus and through investments. Florin Cîţu:
"Reform and investments, these are the two things that this budget is focused on. Record investments, half from European funds, and reform, mentioned so many times in the public space, but rather ignored in reality by many politicians. So, it's time we did it."
Finance Minister Alexandru Nazare says the budget is robust, balanced and realistic. In turn, the Deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna considers that Tuesday's vote in Parliament confirms that Romania now has the most ambitious investment budget it has ever had.
The Democratic Union of Ethnic Hungarians has drawn attention to the fact that multi-annual budgets are needed to secure economic growth and predictability for investors. Here is the Deputy PM Kelemen Hunor:
"We've managed to come up with a very well-structured budget, so in 2021, not only that the deficit goes down to 7.1, but we will be able to make investments in all major fields, from big infrastructure to health-care, from education to environmental protection and local development. These are investments that will change Romania in the coming years."
The opposition, which had filed more than 3,400 amendments, claims that the budget is based on the austerity principle. The Social Democrats have accused the governing coalition of instating a "budgetary dictatorship" and getting an absolute control over the budget, despite all constitutional provisions and democratic practices. Here is Lucian Romaşcanu, leader of the Social Democratic Senators:
"The budget is anti-economic, anti-social, illegitimate and anti-national. It represents by no means the will of those who sent us to Parliament, and the worst thing is that, for the first time in 30 years, a budget was adopted without any amendments".
Representatives of the ultranationalist Alliance for the Unity of Romanians have also criticized the budget. Here is Deputy Mircea Chelaru:
"This is the governing coalition's budget, not Romanians' budget. Is an appalling budget, built on political exclusion."
Romania's 2021 budget was draw up on the basis of a 4.3% economic growth and a budget deficit of 7.1%, with revenues of up to 75 billion Euro and spending set at some 90 billion Euro. (M.I.)