Chevron pays damages to Romania, Charges dropped in Microsoft case, Davis Cup matches in Piatra Neamt
Chevron – The American oil company Chevron will pay to the National Agency for Mineral Resources in Romania around 74 million dollars following the annulment of three oil concession agreements without observing the financial obligations stipulated by the oil law, the Romanian government announced Saturday in a press release. The decision was made by the International Court of Arbitration, a branch of the International Chamber of Commerce based in Paris, which was asked to solve the conflict between Chevron and Romania’s National Agency for Mineral Resources. In 2011, the two sides concluded three concession agreements for exploitation, development and exploration in certain areas in southeastern Romania, which three years later Chevron decided to terminate.
Microsoft – The head of the National Anti-Corruption Directorate, Laura Codruta Kovesi, said she had no reason to resign, after charges were dropped in a resounding corruption case investigated by her assistants because the statute of limitations had expired. Charges were dropped against six former ministers prosecuted for abuse of office allegedly perpetrated in 2003-2004 while in the case of the 7th minister the case was closed. The ministers in question were investigated by the National Anticorruption Directorate for initiating or supporting government orders awarding a public procurement contract to a private company. Anti-corruption prosecutors say this company was considered, with no justification in reality, as the sole provider of Microsoft licenses in Romania, so no public tender was therefore held. Total damages stand at around 70 million dollars.
USR – The leader of the opposition Save Romania Union Dan Barna has called for the resignation of the Foreign Minister, Liberal Democrat Teodor Melescanu following a declaration, which he labels as anti-European. Minister Melescanu had labeled as gross violation of the EU principles the information from Brussels according to which the observance of the rule of law could become a condition for granting European funds. The European Commission decided, for the first time in the history of the community bloc, to start the procedure for the activation of Article 7 against Poland, which provides for the suspension of the right to vote in the European Council. According to Brussels officials, there is evident risk of serious infringement of the rule of law in Poland, where Parliament passed laws that increase the control of the executive power on the judiciary.
Commemoration – Commemoration events were held Saturday at the Memorial to the Victims of Communism and to Resistance in Sighet (northwestern Romania) to mark 65 years since the death of a great Romanian politician, Iuliu Maniu. The political personality of the leader of the National Peasant Party, who was Romania’s prime minister in the interwar period and also a member of the Romanian Academy, was evoked in a number of speeches and papers presented during the events. An activist for union, a promoter of democratic principles and an adversary of Communism and Nazism, Iuliu Maniu was arrested in 1947 by the regime instated by the Soviet occupation and died in 1953 at the age of 80 in the Sighet prison, where most of the former Democratic dignitaries were detained.
Tennis – Romania’s and Luxembourg’s Davis Cup teams have obtained equal scores, 1-1, after the first two singles held Saturday in Piatra Neamt (northeastern Romania) in the first round of Europe/ Africa Zone Group II. In the first singles match on Saturday Ugo Nastasi of Luxembourg defeated the Romanian tennis player Nicolae Frunza 7-6, 1-6, 6-3. In the second match, Marius Copil defeated Christhope Tholl 6-3, 6-2. On Sunday, in the doubles, the pair Florin Mergea/Horia Tecău will play against Ugo Nastasi/Christophe Tholl and in the last two matches Copil will play against Nastasi and Frunza against Tholl. The Davis Cup matches will take place according to the new format announced by the International Tennis Federation with matches consisting of maximum 3 sets being played for two days not three, as has happened so far. Romania was demoted last year to Group I for the first time after 1993, after it lost the match against Israel 0-5. (news translated and updated by Lacramioara Simion)