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The president rejected CFR Marfa privatisation, because an outcry auction was proposed.
President Traian Basescu said that he does not think Romania will be able to reach very soon a new preventive accord with the IMF, given the stage of the present accord which has practically stagnated since May last year. “The priority is represented by the problems I previously discussed with the Fund: lowering the VAT, lowering the regressive flat tax, as promised, lowering the CAS, privatising Oltchim and bringing people back to the plant, privatising the Railroad Company, private management at Transgaz, Transelectrica and many other national companies, so we stop the leeching of companies, because this is where money goes,” he emphasised.The president also mentioned that the clientele-driven system of appointing the managers of large companies must be terminated by installing a honest private management. He stressed that he rejected the privatisation of CFR Marfa because the proposed variant was through outcry tender, which allows anybody to stage a show aired on TV, as it happened with Oltchim, which he found “inadmissible.” “CFR Marfa is a company that can be privatised, but not through outcry tender,” Basescu stated. The president added that he believes CFR Marfa should be privatised with a strategic investor. “A big European railroad company will operate on Romanian territory, a company that will increase its value, this is why we do the privatisation,” Basescu said.As for the IMF, Traian Basescu said that he will not meet their delegation, because he wants to give full freedom of action to the government, which he believes is trying hard to negotiate in view of lowering the VAT, CAS, the regressive tax, and the population expects the successful conclusion of negotiations. Basescu is convinced that any intervention he might do on these topics would “alter” the outcome of these objectives sought through negotiations with the IMF, so he did not want to “hamper” by attending the talks.A mission of the International Monetary Fund is in Bucharest on January 15-29 for the 7th and 8th evaluation of the stand-by arrangement, with the main topics of discussion being the perspectives of the economy, the budget for 2013, the structural reforms and the monetary policy. The IMF mission is accompanied by teams from the European Commission and World Bank.