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DIPLOMACY- Romanian foreign minister, Titus Corlatean is currently on a two-day official visit to Portugal, to mark 40 years since the resumption of bilateral diplomatic relations. He will attend a series of events held on this occasion. Corlatean is due to meet deputy Prime Minister Paulo Portas, Portuguese foreign minister Rui Machete and the High Commissioner for Immigration and Inter-cultural dialogue, Rosario Farmhouse. The agenda of the talks also covers such issues as bilateral political dialogue, economic cooperation, laying emphasis on the investment component, cultural dialogue and the situation of the Romanian community living in Portugal.
FINANCIAL MISSION TO BUCHAREST– A joint delegation of the IMF, the European Commission and the World Bank arrives in Bucharest on Monday, to make the third assessment of the current precautionary loan agreement with Romania, worth 4 billion Euros. Until June the 16th, representatives of Romania’s international lenders and members of the Romanian cabinet will discuss, among others, such issues as the elimination of the state-monopoly in two key economic sectors (energy and infrastructure), reducing the public companies’ arrears and restructuring the freight division of the Romanian Railway Company, CFR Marfa. Another issue high on the agenda of the talks is a 5% reduction in employer social securities contributions, as of July the 1st, a measure insistently demanded by the business environment.
HEALTHCARE- A new basic medical services package was introduced in Romania on Sunday. According to the authorities, it lays emphasis on prevention and brings benefits to patients, who will receive better medical services provided by family and specialist doctors. Other novelties refer to discounts and payments to cover the therapies used to treat autistic children, dental treatments and two series of 10 acupuncture sessions per year. Also, the experts in the field will evaluate risks associated with mental health and reproduction health. Family doctors will monitor patients suffering from some chronic diseases, among which high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, chronic kidney disease and bronchial asthma. Also, B and C hepatitis tests, apart from HIV tests, have been introduced in the minimal and basic package for pregnant women. According to the new norms, patients with 300 diagnoses will no longer be treated in hospital, but in polyclinics.
THE US PRESIDENT’S EUROPEAN TOUR- US President Barack Obama will meet on Tuesday in Poland, the first leg of his European tour, with 10 leaders of the Central and East European allied countries, Romania included. According to the latest information posted on the site of the White House, President Obama is also due to have talks with Ukraine’s newly elected president, Petro Poroshenko. After Warsaw, the US President will attend the G7 Summit in Brussels, which is being held after Russia has been excluded from the G8 and the cancellation of the Sochi meeting, following the Crimean Peninsula’s annexation by Russia. The last leg of President Obama’s tour will be France, where the US president will meet his French counterpart Francois Hollande, on the same day in which the latter is due to receive Russian President Vladimir Putin. They will attend the D-Day ceremonies, marking the allied debarkation in Normandy, on June 6th1944.
EU-The European Commission next week will issue recommendations specific to each country, after complex economic analyses have been carried out in all member states. The European Commission will recommend to them to take into consideration starting a series of reforms next year, in such key sectors as the labour market, education, research and budget consolidation. Last year, the EC made eight specific recommendations to Romania regarding, among others, fiscal policies, public healthcare, employment, public administration and the attraction of EU funds.
ARREST- The French police on Sunday announced it arrested a man suspected of killing four people in an armed attack carried out at the Jewish Museum in Brussels last month. The man, Mehdi Nemmouche, 29, allegedly visited Syria last year, together with Jihad fighters. He was taken into custody in Marseille on Friday, while he was getting off a coach coming from Amsterdam, via Brussels. The suspect was carrying on him a Kalashnikov and a gun similar to those used in the museum attack.
INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S DAY- Google changed the logo of its search engine on Sunday, to mark the International Children’s Day, celebrated by many countries on June the 1st. The highlights of the day in Romania included shows, draws of lots, masque balls, dance contests, drawings on asphalt, sports competitions and film screenings. In Bucharest, the Romanian Parliament and Government opened their doors for a couple of hours to mark the event. Children were invited to take over the MP seats and to form a “Children’s Government”. The International Children’s Day was first mentioned at the World Conference for the Well-being and Protection of Children, held in Geneva, in 1925. Back then, 54 representatives of various countries adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child.
ROWING- Romania’s eight plus one women rowing team on Sunday won the gold medal at the European Rowing Championship in Belgrade, Serbia. Romania’s crew in the women’s double sculls event grabbed a silver medal. The goal of the Romanian delegation was to win two medals. 252 crews from 36 countries participated in this edition of the European Championships.
TENNIS-On Sunday, in the men’s doubles, Romanian Florin Mergea and Croat Marin Draganja qualified for the quarter finals of the second Grand Slam of the year, Roland Garros, after defeating the pair made up of Spaniard Feliciano Lopez and Austrian Jurgen Melzer 7-5, 6-3.