House adopts Offshore Law with 175 votes in favour. Dragnea: We couldn’t accept Romania continuing to be energy dependent on the Russians

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The Offshore Law, which regulates natural gas drilling in the Black Sea, was adopted by the Lower House on Monday, as the decisive Chamber, with 175 votes in favour, 30 against and 30 abstentions. USR, PNL and PMP did not vote. PSD leader Liviu Dragnea stated that the law, adopted by the House in a form that differs significantly from the one adopted by the Senate, will help Romania no longer be energy dependent on the Russians.

The law will force operators to pay progressive taxes on supplementary revenues, 50 percent of all production will have to be sold on the Romanian market, and the sums obtained will be channelled into public-private partnerships.

“We couldn’t accept Romania continuing to be energy dependent on the Russians. The fact that we placed 50 percent of all production on bilateral contracts, and 50 percent traded on the Romanian market, means that Romania becomes one of the few countries that becomes energy independent,” Dragnea said.

On Monday, PSD leader Liviu Dragnea presented a significantly modified variant of the law, compared to the one adopted by the Senate, precisely when the law was being discussed within the special committees.

Thus, fiscal credit is eliminated, a tax on supplementary revenues is introduced, and the state is expected to collect more than USD 20 billion from offshore gas fields, Dragnea announced.

The fiscal credit, a measure included in the variant adopted by the Senate, will be eliminated, being a discriminatory measure, according to Dragnea.

“Fiscal credit was profoundly discriminatory for the other companies in Romania. A tax on supplementary revenues is re-introduced. (…) The Romanian state would collect 13.2 billion dollars. (…) In addition to these sums, which represent the tax on supplementary revenues, the royalties are estimated at 230 million dollars per year. In 20 years, that means 4.6 billion dollars, meaning a total of 17.8 billion dollars collected by the Romanian state,” Dragnea said.

In addition to that, there will be budget revenues from profit tax, income tax, dividends, social security contributions, estimated at a minimum of 2 billion dollars. Thus, the total sum collected by the Romanian state will surpass 20 billion dollars, according to the estimates of the PSD leader.

Moreover, 50 percent of the production will be sold in Romania and a part of the sums would go into the fund for public-private partnership, according to the measures presented on Monday.