Crin Antonescu, the leader of the National Liberal Party (PNL), said during the TV show “After 20 years” aired on Sunday by ProTV channel that he would suggest a pact of all political forces regarding the criteria for the exploitation of natural resources. He also said that the upcoming projects on resource exploitation should be carried out in accordance with this document.
When asked if from his point of view, the draft law on the Rosia Montana gold mining project represents a failure of the Government, Antonescu said: “If we take into account the unified approach by the Social Liberal Union, it is a failure, a not so serious one, more like an accident. However, we have aimed to hold consultations and assume all the Government’s projects to be endorsed by the entire Union, but it’s not the case”. With respect to the suspicions on the Rosia Montana bill, the Liberal leader said he cannot agree with the “ecological, anti-corporate, anti-capitalist” campaign calling for no more exploitation in the mineral resource field. Antonescu said that if the Rosia Montana draft law is rejected by the Parliament, this does mean that the document cannot be changed in order to be approved. When asked about his opinion on shale gas exploitation, the PNL head said this topic has nothing to do with the Rosia Montana project.
On the other hand, PM Victor Ponta told the Antena3 TV news channel on Saturday that he believes that the ideas according to which Romania has to be transformed into “a botanical garden” and the environment should remain untouched no matter what, is an extreme point of view he does not agree with. Moreover, he also said that according to this viewpoint, the Rosia Montana project can be rejected on political criteria, with no serious grounds. He pointed out that it needs to be explained that the European environmental standards currently in force are being observed. On the other hand, Ponta said that if the senators give a political vote, the Rosia Montana project will not be given the green light, given that PNL, the Democratic Liberal Party (PDL) and the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (UDMR) have announced they do not endorse the bill, without explaining clearly their reasons. If this is the case, the Government has a plan B, that is to explain all the investors that this project was rejected on political grounds, but Romania remains open to investments and important projects.
UDMR leader Kelemen Hunor reiterated yesterday that the Rosia Montana draft law is against the Constitution and it will not be voted by the Union, adding that the special commission established for this project is “totally useless and it cannot cast light upon the Constitution-related issues.”