Fresh News

Wednesday, 23 December 2020

The first meeting of Florin Cîțu Cabinet

Statements by Prime Minister Florin Cîțu and members of the Cabinet at the start of the Cabinet meeting


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Florin Cîţu: Good evening. We have got here. The past two weeks were difficult, but you will see next week why we had to work in this period, to have a government before holidays, as there are things which need to be already solved in the next days. Thank you very much for all you have done in this period! Many of you have been part of the negotiating teams, we were together there. I think the result is a beautiful and good project for Romania, this center –right coalition and I am sure that this will be a stable and long government as we all set out with the same goals.

This evening we won't have a Cabinet meeting. There are only a few things we have prepared, we are preparing for the next meeting, which we will hold next week. There are some priorities, especially for combating the negative effects generated by the pandemic and some necessary to support the business environment and the finalization of the budget construction for 2021. All these things should be ready by next week. First of all, the promotion of the draft emergency ordinance for extending the active measures by June 30, 2021. In this respect, Minister of Labour, we need to be ready next week.

The promotion of the draft emergency ordinance regarding the prolongation of the applicability deadline of the IMM Invest government program until June 30, 2021, and the approval of the new subprogram Agro IMM Invest, with applicability until the same term, immediately after receiving the authorization decision from the European Commission. The decision to authorize will be issued by the European Commission by December 24.

 We have this decision, so we must move forward. Also regarding state aid schemes, the European Commission decided to prolong by six months the functioning period of the state aid scheme for large companies. The related financing and guaranteeing norms have been approved and are forwarded for publication in the Official Journal.

We have the promotion of the draft emergency ordinance that institutes the state aid scheme regarding some measures to grant financial support to enterprises in the HoReCa domain - tourism, accommodation units, catering units and tourism agencies, the activity of which was affected in the COVID-19 context. This is for Minister Claudiu Nasui - for next week we should be ready with all approvals. This scheme was pre-notified at the European Commission. After all the necessary clarifications are sent, with a view to checking the compatibility of the state aid scheme, the official notification will follow, and the authorization decision will be issued in accelerated procedure.

We also have the promotion of the draft emergency ordinance for the prolongation of some fiscal incentives in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and here, Minister Nazare, things are unfolding. Promoting fiscal-budgetary measures, such as maintaining allowances for holders of public offices at the level granted for December 2020 and the like. You will see them in the ordinance for tomorrow.

These are the priorities we have for next week. I propose, tomorrow, when the transfer to the ministries will be made, there are already prepared materials and we should start the approval procedures so that we have all the opinions, including from the Legislative Council, on next week's Cabinet meeting, the next Cabinet meeting will likely to take place on Wednesday, at 1.00 pm. That's about all I want to say this evening.

Virgil Popescu: Mr. Prime Minister, an emergency ordinance on extending the validity of holiday vouchers, has been in first reading and is still at the Economy Ministry.

Florin Cîţu: If it was in first reading and has all opinions, will enter debate on the next Cabinet meeting.

Virgil Popescu: We must resume the approval circuit with the new ministries, as for all. And we have another problem regarding an amended law in Parliament, a water law, the Parliament imposed an absurd law, regarding the price of water treated by hydroelectric power plants, which is about three times higher in the case in which they do not install water meters. Or, there is no such thing in Romania. It was introduced by the back door in the Parliament, and we have to solve this as well, because the water costs will increase a lot and we will pay for the water that does not produce electricity.

Florin Cîţu: All right, prepare the ordinance.

Nicolae Ciucă: It is a threefold increase as the Economy Minister says, as revealed by what I received this week. Therefore, a decision must be made in this respect.

Florin Cîţu: Prepare this ordinance as well. I know that two ordinances are being prepared at the Ministry of Justice.

Stelian Ion: Yes, yes. That ordinance prorogating the entry into force of the law governing the number of judges on appeals panels is required.

Florin Cîţu: It should then enter tomorrow's approval circuit so that all the approvals for next week can be taken. Any other ordinances should start the approval circuit tomorrow so that we are ready on time.

Cseke Attila: Thank you, Prime Minister. There will also be a draft emergency ordinance that is also expected by the local public administration authorities regarding the possibility of extending the investment objective on the National Local Development Program, the first stage, which would expire at the end of this year. Tomorrow, we start the approval and we hope to be able to come up with the document.

Florin Cîţu: We have time to get all approvals next weeks.

Cătălin Drulă: The law empowering the government to issue ordinances during the parliamentary recess?

Florin Cîţu: Next week. We'll try again next week. Thanks a lot. We have nothing else now. I just wanted you to get used to the new position. Minister?



Lucian Bode: I have a question, Prime Minister. Good evening and good luck, dear colleagues. Because tomorrow some of us set out to achieve the handover, we should make a calendar this evening so that we do not overlap each time and if you who have already decided to let us know to set this evening in what order do we carry out this handover-reception activity, specifying that at 10:00 pm, some of us will be present at Cotroceni, at an activity alongside the president. Therefore, we should sit and talk, to correlate this activity, because the press will be interested and you can't have four, five activities at the same time.

Florin Cîţu: Ok. You will do it after. Thanks. Good luck! I'm sure we'll have a successful term of office. Minister.

Bogdan Aurescu: I just want to thank Minister Ciucă for his work as interim Prime Minister, during the period that has just ended.

Nicolae Ciuca: Thank you, Minister. It was an activity in which we had to cover everything that was a priority for the Romanian Government, I mean what the Prime Minister has mentioned: monitoring and controlling the pandemic situation and also preparing the vaccination campaign. I thank all the Cabinet members. /.../ I hope it will be a transfer as beneficial as possible for the new Cabinet, for the new Prime Minister. Good luck, Mr. Prime Minister!

Florin Cîţu: Thank you, Minister, former interim Prime Minister.

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