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Romania

Capital Bucureşti
Time Zone EEST (GMT+2)
Country Code 40
Mobile Codes 71,72,73,74,75,76,77,78
ccTLD .ro
Currency Leu nou (1EUR = 4.1 RON)
Land Area 238,391 sq km
Population 22 million
Language Romanian
Major Religion Orthodox Christianity

Issues and Insights

Overview

Romania is a country of Latin language and culture on the banks of the Black Sea. A member of the EU since 2007, Romania is building a stronger European identity, all the while defining itself as an important regional partner. The beautiful landscapes and fast-growing industries make it a very attractive destination.The European membership had done much for the business environment and reduction of corruption, but the general view is that there is still room for improvement in that particular area.

Outstanding Issues

Romania has no border disputes with its neighbors, but ethnic repartition in Eastern Europe is an issue in the relationships with neighboring Hungary, Ukraine and Moldova.  The Russian support for the Moldovan Transnistria province is a chronic side-effect of the relations, as Romania has sought reunion with Moldova in the past. The EU is also involved in this issue.

Relations with EU have been strained previous to and after the accession, due to  corruption and reform issues. Romania’s non-accession to the Schengen Zone was also an irritant. The EU has been critical of the government and institutions several times in recent years, and the increase of NATO-Russia tensions (and even relations with Syria) have affected Western interference in Romanian affairs. Romania did not suffer from the 2015 migrant crisis, being too far east of major routes, but has seen a military build-up due to the NATO efforts against Russia.

Forward Planning: Points of Interest

  • Institutional reform, corruption claims and economic rebalancing
  • Citizens rights in the EU following the June 2016 Brexit vote- brain drain effects and possible repatriation challenges
  • EU relations, as well as US-backed initiatives with political impact due to rivalry with Russia
  • Future business deals of environmental impact such as energy infrastructure and gold mining
  • Infrastructure development in rural areas and reduction of emigration through economic development