The “Horizon Europe” program has been the main point on the agenda of the EU Competitiveness Council in Brussels/ The Brancusi Day was celebrated on February 19
COMPET – The “Horizon Europe” program was the main point on the agenda of the EU Competitiveness Council in Brussels, the innovation and research section. The meeting was chaired by Romanian Research Minister Nicolae Hurduc, who said Romania wants to ensure the necessary conditions for the continuation of the Horizon Europe program starting 2021. This important project should be the core engine of the European Union, which has the human resources and necessary infrastructure to maintain its status of leader in the field of scientific research. The Commission suggests that 100 billion Euros be earmarked for this sector in the following long term budget of the EU, for the 2021-2027 timeframe. The program had supported over 18 thousand projects and had allotted over 31 billion Euros until May 2018.
BRANCUSI DAY – Romanians on Tuesday celebrated Brancusi Day, devoted to the 143rd birth anniversary of the outstanding sculptor Constantin Brancusi. “The artist embodies Romanian identity in its material and spiritual entirety, succeeding in committing it to the legacy of universal culture”, says Ioan-Aurel Pop, the President of the Romanian Academy. An iconic figure of modern art, Constantin Brancusi was born in Romania and moved to Paris. He is recognized as one of the greatest sculptors of the 20th century. The National Museum of Modern Art in Paris hosts a great number of Brancusi’s works, which in his will he left to Romania. However, upon the refusal of the communist authorities in Romania to bring home Brancusi’s works upon the sculptor’s death, the collection was bequeathed to France along with the contents of his workshop in Paris. The Romanian Parliament declared February 19 “Brancusi Day” in 2015.
GAC –The European Commission has noticed little progress has been made since December in various domains in Poland “There are also a number of new, worrying developments, especially in the field of disciplinary procedures against judges who make public statements about the rule of law in Poland or who have asked preliminary questions to the European Court of Justice,” the First Vice-President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans, said fresh from the General Affairs Council meeting. “We still have worries about the situation of the constitutional tribunal”, he also said. Article 7 might be triggered in Poland’s case for failure to observe the rule of law. In Brussels, the participating ministers prepared the work agenda of the European Council meeting due next month. The meeting, chaired by the Romanian minister for European affairs, George Ciamba, was devoted to the multi-annual financial framework post 2020, considering a political agreement on the future budget of the EU should be reached as late as this autumn.
RETRIAL – The High Court of Cassation and Justice on Tuesday admitted the appeal for annulment filed by former Romanian Senator Dan Sova against his 3-year prison sentence in a case where he was charged with influence peddling. The National Anticorruption Directorate accused Sova of having received 100,000 euros in exchange for facilitating a judicial assistance contract between a thermal power plant in Govora and a local law firm. Dan Sova was released from prison in December last year after having served six months of his detention time, following a Constitutional Court ruling concerning the illegal structure of the five-judge panel.
CHILD ALLOWANCE – The Romanian Government on Tuesday increased the child allowance from some 18 Euros to some 32 Euros a month. The measure will take effect as from March 1, and PM Viorica Dancila has given assurances the necessary sums of money have been included in the state budget law, who has been forwarded to president Klaus Iohannis for promulgation. Also on Tuesday, the government adopted Romania’s national selection procedure for European prosecutor. Thus, Bucharest should designate three candidates for the position of European prosecutor by March 31, the justice minister Tudorel Toader has said. According to him, the short term by which nominations can be sent to Brussels comes to explain the urgent adoption of the bill, and the selection procedure will be made by the Justice Ministry.
FLU – The death toll of the flu epidemic in Romania has reached 138. According to a press release of the National Center for Infectious Disease Surveillance and Control, the last three victims are a 68-year-old woman without a previous history of medical diseases who had taken the anti-flu shot and another two women, aged 64 and 81 respectively, both suffering from other medical conditions and who had not taken the anti-flu vaccine.
TENNIS – Romanian tennis player world no. 2 Simona Halep on Tuesday defeated Eugenie Bouchard of Canada,7-6,6-4, in the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Championships, totalling 2.8 million dollars in prize money. Also on Tuesday, the pair made up of Raluca Olaru of Romania and Darija Jurak of Croatia defeated second-seeds Nicole Melichar of the United States and Kveta Peschke of the Czech Republic 7-6, 7-6 and have advanced to the doubles quarterfinals. (Translated by V. Palcu and D. Vijeu)