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July 25, 2023 UPDATE

A roundup of domestic and international news

NEWSFLASH
NEWSFLASH

, 25.07.2023, 20:00

Security. The Bucharest authorities have announced that at the moment there is no direct military threat to Romanias national territory or territorial waters. The announcement was made after Russia had attacked with drones two Ukrainian ports on the Danube, Reni and Ismail, near the border with Romania. The Russian attack was strongly condemned by the President of Romania, the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the Senate.



Finance. The ruling coalition in Bucharest has failed to reach an agreement on the package of fiscal measures to reduce the budget deficit. On Monday, coalition leaders approved a proposal set forth by Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu regarding the elimination of 200,000 vacancies in the public sector and one proposal by the Liberal leader Nicolae Ciucă regarding expenditure cuts in all ministries. Solutions to combating tax evasion and improving the collection of revenues to the state budget were also discussed. Among the proposals aimed at reducing the deficit and bringing more money to the budget are the increase in the minimum salary of construction workers, in parallel with the elimination of their exemption from the payment of the healthcare contribution, eliminating the reduced VAT rate of 5%, which currently applies to some products and services, the increase in the tax on dividends and a higher tax for small companies with a turnover of over 500,000 euros. According to the finance minister, Romania should have a budget deficit of maximum 5%, or it risks losing the European funds from the National Recovery and Resilience Plan.



Climate. No nation can tackle the global climate crisis alone, in isolation, said, on Tuesday, the Speaker of the Romanian Senate, Nicolae Ciucă. He participated, in Bucharest, in the ministerial meeting organized on the basis of the Agreement between the Governments of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania and Hungary regarding the Strategic Partnership in the field of green energy development and transport. In a post on Facebook, Nicolae Ciucă recalled that last December, as prime minister, he signed the agreement between the four countries for the construction of a cable under the Black Sea to transport green energy to Europe. At Tuesdays meeting of the Ministers of Energy from Azerbaijan, Georgia, Romania and Hungary, the steps for the implementation of this project were discussed, which, the Senate Speaker also said, will contribute to the transformation of Romania into a regional energy hub.



Wildfires. The 130 Romanian firefighters who are helping put out the fires in Greece have worked very well together with their Greek colleagues and with firefighters from other countries, said on Tuesday, the head of the Department for Emergency Situations in Bucharest, Raed Arafat. The Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, has voiced gratitude for the presence of Romanian firefighters in his country, while the Minister of Tourism, Olga Kefalogianni, sent a safety message regarding the situation of tourists on vacation in Greece. In Bucharest, the Ministry of Economy, Entrepreneurship and Tourism recommended Romanians who intend to travel to Greece to inform themselves, before departure, about the existing situation at their destination and to avoid traveling in areas where there are wildfires. For its part, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs informs Romanian citizens who are transiting or are planning to travel to the Hellenic Republic that the local authorities decided to maintain, until July 27, the red code alert and the warnings for wildfires in the 4th and 5th degrees, on a scale from 1 to 5. The ministry also recommends to those who are in an area where a fire occurs to strictly comply with the instructions of the local authorities and stay informed.



Swimming. Romanian swimmer David Popovici (18 years old) came in fourth in the final of the 200 m freestyle event on Tuesday, at the 2023 World Swimming Championships in Fukuoka (Japan). Popovici, reigning world champion in the 100 and 200 m freestyle, started from lane four and clearly dominated the first three lengths of the pool (150 m), but in the last 50 meters he inexplicably lost speed and finished only fourth with a time of 1min 44sec 90/100. Also in Fukuoka, David Popovici will compete in the 100 m freestyle, scheduled for July 26. The final will take place on the 27th of July. (MI)


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