VISIT The PM of Romania, Viorica Dăncilă, is in the USA until Tuesday, to take part in the conference of the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), at the invitation of the AIPAC president Morton Fridman, and executive director Howard Kohr. On Saturday, the PM met in Washington with representatives of American companies having invested in Romania. According to a government press release, Dancila presented the measures taken by her Cabinet to enhance the attractiveness of the Romanian business environment. The American investors appreciated the opportunities offered by Bucharest for the development of the strategic defence industry and for investments in healthcare, energy, research and innovation, IT and communications. The participants also discussed the recent changes in the public private partnership legislation, emphasising that it includes broader contractual terms and allows for more flexible financing, enabling parties to share the risks and benefits.
MEETING EU transport ministers and state secretaries are taking part on March 26th and 27th in the informal meeting of EU transport ministers held in Bucharest under the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU. They will discuss, among other things, the future of mobility in the Union and means to strengthen connectivity and cohesion by means of the TEN-T network. According to the organisers, an enlarged and consolidated trans-European transport network will help improve territorial cohesion, the accessibility and connectivity of all regions in the EU, thus stimulating investments and narrowing development gaps.
TRANSPORT The Romanian Transport Operator Federation (FORT) announces in a news release that on Wednesday, March 27th they will protest in Strasbourg against the EU Mobility Package 1, alongside other employer associations from Romania and Eastern European countries. The Federation is against the obligation for drivers to return home at least every 4 weeks or, if a driver chooses the reduced weekly rest option, every 3 weeks on the road. FORT also demands a review of regular weekly rest rules and is also against applying the rules of posting to road transport.
PROTESTS The weekly “yellow vest” protest in France took place on Saturday under strict police control, following the incidents of March 16th in Paris, which had prompted President Emmanuel Macron’s criticism of the police force. According to Radio Romania’s correspondent in Paris, protesters’ access to certain parts of the city was prohibited, and the police checked thousands of people to identify individuals intent on resorting to violence. Across the country, many individuals were detained while trying to reach Paris equipped with baseball bats, projectiles, gas masks. Significant clashes between the protesters and the police were also reported in Lyon, Lille and Montpellier, but order has been restored. The so-called “yellow vest” movement emerged in November as a protest against a rise in fuel prices.
TENNIS The Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, no 3 in the world, is playing today against Slovenian Polona Hercog, in the 3rd round of the Miami tournament, which has over 9 million US dollars in total prize money. In the doubles, Simona Halep and Julia Goerges (Germany) qualified on Saturday in the 8th-finals. Another Romanian, Raluca Olaru, playing together with Croatian Darija Jurak, is also playing in the 8th-finals of the doubles tournament, against Lara Arruabarrena of Spain / Heather Watson (UK). Also today, Monica Niculescu of Romania and Abigail Spears of the USA, defeated Anna-Lena Groenefeld (Germany) / Lucie Hradecka (the Czeck Republic), 2-0, 6-3, 7-5. On Saturday, Monica Niculescu (138 WTA) lost to Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark (13 WTA) 6-4, 7-6 (4), in the 3rd round of the Miami tournament.
FOOTBALL Romania’s national football team was defeated on Saturday night, 2-1, in Sweden, in a EURO 2020 qualifier match held at the Friends Arena in Solna. On Tuesday, Romania is playing at home against Faroe. The top 2 teams in each group qualify into the final tournament. The drawing for the Euro 2020 takes place in Bucharest on November 30. The Romanian capital city will also host 4 final tournament games, 3 in the group stage and an 8th-final. Meanwhile, Romania’s Under-21 team Thursday lost a friendly against Spain, and are scheduled to play on Monday against Denmark. In the 2019 European Youth Championship hosted by Italy and San Marino, Romania plays in Group C, alongside England, France and Croatia.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)