The National Council of the Sanitas Federation has announced it will stage an all out strike in the Romanian healthcare system/ Bucharest is hosting two regional meetings at ministerial level, devoted to defence and foreign affairs, respectively
HEALTHCARE – The Sanitas Federation has announced it will stage a protest in the Romanian healthcare system, which will culminate with an all out strike. Trade union representatives are discontent about a new payment scheme in the system and call for a 25% increase in the base salary for the medical staff and the elimination of the 30% ceiling for bonuses. Last month, health minister Sorina Pintea, said the medical staff will benefit from pay rises ranging from 70 to 170%. Subsequently, as of March, a senior consultant earns a net monthly salary of some 2,000 Euros.
TRILATERAL MEETING – Bucharest is today the venue for the Romania-Bulgaria-Greece trilateral meeting at the level of foreign ministers. The declared objectives of the meeting, are, at political level, dialogue on regional developments, and at economic level, cooperation in the domain of transport and energy infrastructure as well as general aspects of economic development. The trilateral meeting also has a regional stability component: fighting illegal migration, drug trafficking and organised crime. In 2010, the three countries adopted a joint declaration on the West Balkans. Also as part of the Trilateral, there is an understanding between the governments of the three countries in the field of internal affairs, meant to contain cross border crime and to have responses to urgent calls in case of calamities and natural disasters.
DEFENCE – The defence ministers of the “Bucharest 9 Initiative” member states are today meeting in Bucharest. For three days, the meeting will be attended by officials from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Slovakia, NATO officials and representatives of the US Department of Defence. The agenda of talks covers such issues as ways to consolidate NATO’s deterrence and defence posture, laying emphasis on the eastern flank, with a view to getting a political decision at the NATO Summit due in summer. Other issues to be approached will be the adaptation process of the NATO Command Structure, risks and threats from the eastern neighbourhood of the Alliance, as well as ways to strengthen resilience on the Baltic Sea-Black Sea axis. Romania offered to host a NATO military command at the level of Army corps, to function alongside the other two already existing commands, at brigade level, in Craiova (in the south-west) and at division level in Bucharest. A decision will be made by the allies at the NATO summit due in Brussels in July.
SOVEREIGN FUND – The economy and budget committees of the Romanian Senate are starting debates as of this week, on setting up the Sovereign Development and Investment Fund. This is an instrument by which the government intends to fund strategic development projects in key domains such as infrastructure, agriculture, healthcare, without producing an impact on the country’s budget deficit. Finance Minister Eugen Teodorovici has said he completed talks with Eurostat experts in this respect, and the draft law will be debated by the two chambers of the Romanian Parliament in the current legislative session. The Romanian State, through the Economy Ministry, will have the status of sole shareholder as long as the Fund is functioning. The fund will have as estimated value of over 10 billion Euros.
REP. OF MOLDOVA – The Central Electoral Commission is today making public the date for holding early local elections in two major cities in the Republic of Moldova (a former Soviet state with a predominantly Romanians speaking population)- the capital city, Chishinau and Balti (in the north). Some political parties have already announced the name of their candidate or made public their stand on the ballot in the capital city. This election is regarded as the last test in preparation for the autumn electoral campaign for the parliamentary elections. The positions of mayor of the cities of Chishinau and Balti have been vacant since February, when the mayors of the two cities stepped down. The pro-Russian populist mayor of Balti, Renato Usatîi, left Moldova for Russia more than a year ago. He is being investigated in a file in which he is accused of having ordered the assassination of a businessman. In Chishinau, the pro-western Liberal mayor Dorin Chirtoaca is being investigated in a corruption file, which he says it is being fabricated. He was suspended from the position of mayor in the summer of 2017.
TENNIS – No.1 world woman tennis player, Romanian Simona Halep, has today qualified to the eighth finals of the Indian Wells, after defeating US player Caroline Dolehide (no. 165 WTA), 1-6, 7-6, 6-2. Following this victory, Halep is sure to remain on the first position of world tennis for a week. In the next stage, Simona will face the Chinese player Qiang Wang (no. 55 WTA). The two women tennis players have never met so far. (Translated by D. Vijeu)