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Romanian report Romanian report
by Euro Reporter
2011-02-17 09:24:19
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Romanian students are given guide saying that gift giving to teachers could be corrupt

A new anti-corruption campaign is being launched in Romania, this one aimed at students who give gifts to their teachers. A civic group and the government have teamed up to produce and distribute a guide that tells students that giving their teachers gifts such as flowers or money is "an act of masked corruption" — often aimed at winning favours.

A recent survey indicated 61 per cent of students aged 16 to 26 have given such gifts in Romania, where corruption is widespread. But some do that merely to show appreciation for the hard work of their teachers — a poorly paid profession in Romania. Beginning next month, the guide will be distributed in Bucharest to high school students. It is not legally binding.


Romania launches investigation into union leaders amid claims of bribery and kickbacks

The body that monitors and investigates public officials' finances in Romania says it has begun a probe of 13 union leaders. The investigation on Wednesday comes after authorities arrested some 150 border police and customs officials and charged them with taking bribes from cigarette smugglers.

One of those arrested, former border chief Marius Ungureanu, defended himself by saying corruption was widespread and that border officials had to pay a monthly sum to union leader Vasile Marica in exchange for promotions and keeping their jobs. Other union leaders say the investigation is politically motivated by their involvement in last year's protests against the government.


TV, radio ads for prescription drugs, forbidden in Romania

Promoting prescription medicine is forbidden on Romanian TV or radio, but broadcasters are allowed to advertise medical practices, clinics and pharmacies, according to amendments to Romania’s broadcasting Code, adopted Tuesday by the National Audiovisual Council (CNA). Adverts for medicine must include: the product’s name, its generic name (if it contains a single active substance), its therapeutic purpose and the warning “This is a drug. Read the prospectus carefully.” The warning must be spoken clearly, to ensure the accurate perception of the message.

The amendments to the Code forbid medical products or treatments, as well as food supplements, to be advertised bearing the endorsement of celebrities, medical personnel or pharmacists. The new Code also prohibits adverts for such products from being aired during children’s programming or in the breaks before and after such shows. Producers and distributors of medical products or treatments, or of food supplements, may not sponsor shows aimed at children. Advertising products or treatments for sexual issues is only permitted between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Ads for homeopathic products or food supplements must end with a warning, which must be at least three seconds long.

Ads for food products used in weight loss diets must not refer to the speed of weight loss, reduction in appetite or increase in perceived satiety, except as allowed by Regulation (EC) no. 1924/2006. The ads must also include a written and spoken warning: “See your doctor before starting the diet.”


Romania's GDP dropped by 1.2% in 2010

Romania’s economy dropped by 1.2% last year, less than official estimates of authorities, which anticipated a 1.9-2% reduction. In the fourth quarter GDP grew slightly by 0.1% in real terms c\as against the previous quarter, according to data of the National Statistics Institute (INS). Romania had in the fourth quarter of 2010 the lowest economic growth in EU reported to the previous quarter, Eurostat data show. The head of IMF mission in Romania, Jeffrey Franks declared in November that although the recovery would begin in the last quarter of 2010, economy would close the year with a negative growth of -2% in order for GDP to register a real growth of 1.5% in 2011, Mediafax shows.

The economy entered recession in the second quarter of 2008 with the drop of GDP by 0.1% against the previous three months.Since then, GDP has registered drops each term, except for slight increases of 0.1% in 2009 and 0.3% in 2010, second quarter. EU economy grew by 2.1% in the last quarter of 2010, compared to the same period of 2009, while in the euro area the growth was of 2%, according to Eurostat data. Compared to the previous quarter, GDP grew by 0.2% in EU 27 and by 0.3% in the euro area.Throughout the year EU economy grew by 1.7%. Romania and Greece (-6.6%) were the only economies to register a GDP drop compared to the same period of 2009. The highest GDP rises were in Estonia (6.6%), Finland (5.8%) and Lithuania (4.4%).

Romanian Statistics confirms: 2010 GDP Down 1.2% On Year, Less Than Expected. Romania's economy shrank at an annual rate of 1.2% in unadjusted terms in 2010, a slower pace than initially predicted, according to a flash estimate of the country’s statistics institute (INS) released Tuesday. Authorities had estimated a contraction of around 1.9% in 2010, after a decline of 7.1% a year earlier.In October to December 2010, Romania's gross domestic product grew 0.1% in seasonally adjusted terms compared with the previous three months, after two consecutive quarters of decline.

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