Deputy PM Viorel Stefan: Romania, fifth among EU 28 member states due to 4.2 percent growth

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Deputy Prime Minister Viorel Stefan affirmed Romania, with the first quarter’s 4.2 economic growth, ranks fifth among the European Union’s 28 member states, twice the level of the European average.

“Just as last year, the growth is twice the level of the 2.4 European Union average, 4.2 the growth registered by the Romanian economy. As the European Commission has said, we have a robust economic growth and the development rhythm stands at the potential forecasted by the Commission for the current year,” Viorel Stefan stated at the Victoria Palace, in a presentation on the state of the Romanian economy in 2018’s first quarter.

The Deputy Prime Minister underscored that the first quarter’s results are “less relevant, as they only have a 19 percent contribution, if we look at the entire year.”

“Secondly, we need to notice that usually the first quarter is influenced by uncertain conditions to a larger extent than the other quarters of the year,” Viorel Stefan said.

Romania’s economy increased by 4 percent in this year’s first quarter, as raw series, and by 4.2 percent as series adjusted depending on working days and seasonality, as compared to the same period of 2017, show data released on Tuesday by the National Institute of Statistics (INS).

 

“In 2018 we want main engine to be investments”

 

Deputy PM Viorel Stefan on Tuesday stated that in 2018 economic growth “will change its engines,” while specifying the Government wants this year “the main engine to be investments.”

“This is the year when economic growth will change its engines. So we are in 2018 and we want the main engine to be investments. (…) The industry turnover increased by 13.7 per cent (…) in the first quarter of 2018 compared with the first quarter of 2017. This shows a consolidation in the industrial area, which creates the premises for a robust, sustainable economic growth,” said Viorel Stefan at the Victoria Governmental Palace.

In his opinion, it is very “encouraging” that orders are growing in industry.

“If in the first quarter of 2016 the orders volume increased by just 4.1 per cent, in the first quarter of 2017 it grew by 12.9 per cent, and in the first quarter of 2018 indicates an order volume that is up by 15.8 per cent, which creates the premises for an upward trend in the next quarters of this year,” said Viorel Stefan.

Moreover, he specified that “a significant reduction” of the gap between imports and exports has been recorded.

“From a double level in terms of import growth compared with exports growth – and we are looking now into 2016, when imports grew by 7.2 per cent in the first quarter, while exports grew by only 3.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2018, which shows an increase in imports by 10.8 per cent, and in exports by 9.8 per cent, while we want in 2020 to switch on surplus. This is an encouraging trend and these are real premises that will determine such evolution,” says Viorel Stefan.

Moreover, he specified that “the business environment confirms the feeling of confidence in the government.”

“Direct foreign investments, if we compare them with the first quarter of 2016, have increase in the end of the first quarter of 2018 by 57 per cent, from 0.88 billion euros up to 1,380,000,000 euros, with a 2017 level, of course, of 1,140,000,000 euro, which means an upward trend,” said Viorel Stefan.