SPORTS

NEWS IN BRIEF

Romanian football teams placed from 78 to 224 in IFFHS standings


The team Steaua Bucharest is on the 78th place, with 127 points, in the June standings of the International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS), and is the best-positioned Romanian team.


The next Romanian team in these standings is FC Vaslui, on the 98th place, with 118 points, falling from the 89th position it had reached last month. CFR Cluj also registered a decline and is placed on the 100th position at the time being, with 114.5 points. FC Timisoara climbed four places and is on the 133rd position, with 100 points. The Romanian Champion Unirea Urziceni is on the 191st position (decreasing from 173) with 87.5 points. Dinamo Bucharest is on the 224th position, (after being on the 199th place last month), with 82 points.


Nadal will return to action in Montreal, says coach


MADRID – World number two Rafael Nadal will return to action at next week’s Montreal Masters event after a two-month lay off with injury, his coach and uncle Toni Nadal said on Monday. The Spaniard has been suffering from tendinitis in both knees and has not played a competitive match since being knocked out in the fourth round of the French Open by Robin Soderling on May 31. “Rafa will play in Montreal. It is good news for us,” Toni Nadal told Radio Marca. “It’s another thing to know what standard he will be at. I imagine he won’t be in very good condition. He has been training but without really pushing it very much. “To see what form he’s in we’ll have to see how he copes in a proper match.” During his time away from the court, Nadal lost his French Open and Wimbledon titles and his number one ranking to Swiss rival Roger Federer. In an interview last week, Nadal cast doubts as to whether he would be fit to defend his title in Montreal. “There is no particular objective at present,” Nadal’s coach continued. “The challenge is to get back into form and to be in good shape for the U.S. Open.” The U.S. Open starts on Aug. 31.

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Bear attacks Czech tourist in Caraiman Valley


A tourist from the Czech Republic was attacked by a bear on Monday evening in the Caraiman Valley. The man was hospitalized in Sinaia with several wounds and concussions. According to George Cotinghiu from within the Busteni Mountain Rescue Service, the tourist was descending late on Monday evening from the Caraiman chalet towards Busteni, when he was attacked by a bear. Several persons that were nearby immediately came to the tourist’s aid, scaring off the animal.


Nanny accused of child violence faces criminal probe


Prosecutors began a criminal probe against a nanny who is accused of having beaten up the two children she had been hired to look after, Realitatea TV reported. The woman, Ecaterina Spirea, was scheduled to go for a hearing at a Bucharest police station, but the hearing was postponed because the woman said she had some personal problems to take care of. The scandal began after the parents made public a video recording showing the nanny while beating up the children, unaware she was being taped.


December 21 Association leader on hunger strike


The president of the 21 December Association, Teodor Maries, went on hunger strike since yesterday at the entry to Cotroceni Palace, the seat of the Presidential Administration. Maries calls for President Traian Basescu’s support on all the 1990 Revolution and Miners’ Riot files to no longer be deemed secret. Maries holds that the association he represents won a trial with the ECHR, which demanded that the Romanian state make available the Revolution and Miners’ Riot dossiers, yet the Executive and the Superior Council of Magistracy have not abided by the court’s decision.

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Transplant agency chief, sacked over the accrediting of Sabyc clinic


Victor Zota was removed from the position of chief of the National Transplant Agency (ANT) because, in the case of the Sabyc clinic, he infringed the legislation that states the accrediting can be made only through an order signed by the minister. Aurel Nechita, state secretary with the Health Ministry, yesterday declared there is no minister’s order for accrediting the Sabyc clinic. According to Nechita, the decision to remove Zota was made after authorities checked the accrediting procedure of Sabyc clinic, which is involved in an affair of ova trafficking. Toma Velio will replace Zota as chief of ANT.


Zota declared the Agency he led and the State Sanitary Inspection showed that Sabyc can operate and that seven to eight months are needed to draft a minister’s order of accrediting. He added that the personnel declared by the clinic’s officials “had nothing to do” with the medics who were actually working in the clinic. Three people – two Israeli medics and a secretary of the clinic – are still in custody for investigations in this case, under the accusation that they formed an organized criminal group which trafficked human cells with the purpose of obtaining material benefits.


Three injured in accident involving MApN trailer


A vehicle owned by the National Defence Ministry (MApN) was involved yesterday in a traffic accident that occurred on the 1A National Road, at the exit from the city Sacele, Brasov County, to Cheia. Three persons were injured after the vehicle hit three trees near the road. According to the Traffic Information Centre of the Romanian Police Department, quoted by Mediafax, the traffic on 1A National Road was blocked on both directions, due to the accident that occurred at approximately 12.40 PM. The vehicle of the Ministry of Defence was part of a group that carried equipment and, at the border of the Babarunca locality in Brasov County, it collided with a vehicle, then collided with a few trees and overturned in a precipice. Three persons, all of them traveling in the military trailer, were injured during this accident. The intervention of a rescue team was required for the removal of the driver from the vehicle. Three SMURD ambulances arrived to the scene and transported the injured to the Brasov County Hospital. Nobody from the other vehicle was injured. All three victims were employees of the National Defence Ministry. Initial investigation showed that a technical issue had disabled the brakes of the military trailer.

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NEWS IN BRIEF

UDMR, PNL consider entering the Government after Presidential elections


UDMR and PNL leaders have stated that they are analyzing the possibility of entering the Government alongside PD-L or PSD depending on who wins the Presidential elections and that the negotiations on backing one of the candidates in the second round of the Presidential elections could be ‘decisive’ for the structure of the new Government, Antena 3 informs.


Marko Bela has underlined that he does not conceive a new minority Government formula, with the only solution being a majority coalition that enjoys a strong backing. ‘A different Government formula should hold the majority; it should not be a minority Government. I cannot conceive the existence of a minority Government backed by Parliament,’ the President of UDMR stated.


PNL Vice President Relu Fenechiu has stated that if the current Government were to collapse the Liberals should rule out the forming of a Government in any formula that involves Traian Basescu appointing the Prime Minister. However he stated that he is interested in forming a partnership with the PD-L after the Presidential elections provided Basescu will not win a new term in office. According to the Liberal, the inter-party negotiations for the second round of the Presidential elections will be decisive for the form of the future Government. ‘Only a hypocrite could state that the second round won’t influence the structure of the new Government,’ the Liberal MP stated.


Nistorescu dismissed Patrasconiu from ‘Cotidianul’


Cornel Nistorescu, the new editor-in-chief of the daily paper ‘Cotidianul,’ announced employees yesterday that journalist Cristian Patrasconiu, senior editor, will no longer write for this paper and, after he finishes his holiday, he will be handed a two weeks’ notice, sources from the newspaper announced, as quoted by Hot News.


Contacted on the phone, Nistorescu explained that the reason for Patrasconiu’s dismissal was his unwillingness to adapt to the changes Nistorescu wants to establish.


According to the quoted source, a meeting of the Realitatea – Catavencu board was also scheduled yesterday, in order to decide whether Ilie Costin, editor-in-chief for the online version of Cotidianul.ro would be sanctioned for refusing to remove a first-page investigation by Mirela Corlatan about Petru Romosan’s collaboration with the Securitate. It seems that the series of dismissals will not stop here, as other ‘Cotidianul’ journalists expect to be fired by the new editor-in-chief. Former manager Doru Buscu refused to comment on the interruption of Romosan’s investigation, and also on Patrasconiu’s dismissal.

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BUSINESS

NEWS IN BRIEF

INS: Net average wage up by 1.7 pc in June


According to the National Statistics Institute (INS), the net average wage has grown by 1.7 per cent (RON 23) to RON 1,379 in June compared to May and by 8.3 per cent compared to the same month last year, Mediafax informs. The highest values were registered in the financial intermediations sector, with the lowest values registered in the hotels and restaurants sector. In June the gross nominal average wage stood at RON 1,887, 1.7 per cent higher than the level registered the month before. The highest wage growths, with the exception of the insurance and pension funds activities, were registered in the financial intermediations sector (20.9 per cent). Wage growths ranging from 7 to 10 per cent were registered in the following sectors: telecommunications, production of mainstay pharmaceutical products, printing and recording, production of beverages and other industrial activities. On the other hand, net average wage drops of 12.1 per cent were registered in services auxiliary to extraction activities. In its spring prognosis the National Prognosis Commission (CNP) had forecast a 1.9 per cent drop in the real wage this year (with the recovery set in 2011) and a growth in the number of the unemployed from 403,400 in 2008 to 620,000 at the end of 2009.


Bechtel completes Transylvania Highway viaduct


The Bechtel Company (US) has announced the completion of the largest viaduct located on the 2B Campia Turzii – Gilau segment of the Transylvania Highway. The construction of the viaduct started in 2007. The viaduct is approximately one kilometer long and 23 meters high and spans the Aries River, Mediafax informs. According to a communiqué issued yesterday by Bechtel, the construction works on the viaduct whose height is equivalent to an 8-storey building started in June 2007 but the lack of funds caused intermittences last year. ‘192 U-type slabs weighing 160 tons apiece were needed for the construction of the viaduct. The works were completed by pouring the concrete slab so that starting from now the viaduct is able to handle heavy traffic,’ the aforementioned document reads. Bogdan Sgarcitu, Bechtel’s press relations director, underlined that ‘the completion of this viaduct is a reference point for the whole project because it illustrates not only the complexity of the work but also the extraordinary mobilization in order to attain the annual goal set along with the beneficiary.’


State owned companies are the state’s biggest debtors


The large state owned companies are also the biggest debtors, Realitatea.net informs. According to the data of the Ministry of Public Finances, the debts that the big companies owe to the state budget have grown in Q2 by almost 8 per cent to approximately EUR 1.3 billion. The coal industry and railway companies owe the biggest debts to the state budget. The National Mineral Coal Company tops the table of debtors with a debt of over RON 3.3 bln. Its debt grew in Q2 by 3.6 per cent compared to the one reported at the end of March. The National Charcoal Company ranks second, its debt having risen by 3.2 per cent from RON 367 M to RON 379 M. The Romanian Railway Company (CFR SA) ranks third, its debt having risen by almost 40 per cent to RON 349 M at the end of June.

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India’s Arcelor Mittal violates privatisation contracts, paper says


According to ‘Gardianul’ daily, the Hunedoara-based ArcelorMittal steel plant could be closed by the end of this year. The employees accuse ArcelorMittal’s leadership of seeking to cut up the plant’s rolling mills in order to sell them for scrap. The labor union members will sue the Authority for the Capitalization of State Assets (AVAS) and the ArcelorMittal Company for the violation of their contractual obligations and the destruction of the Hunedoara-based steel plant. Moreover, the leadership of ArcelorMittal Galati has approved the closing down of the chemical-coke plant without the agreement of AVAS.
Wizz Air launches flights to Grenoble


Starting in December the Wizz Air Company will operate flights to Grenoble (France) from Cluj-Napoca and Bucharest, Mediafax informs. The flights will have a frequency of one per week. ‘The new flights are part of Wizz Air’s recent development stages in Romania, stages that include among other things the earmarking of a third aircraft for the base in Bucharest and the doubling of the transportation capacity,’ a company communiqué reads.


Sixt New Kopel to import Chery Automobile cars


Sixt New Kopel will import in Romania the cars produced by China’s Chery Automobile. The distribution will start after the cars receive their homologation certificate as per the European Union norms, Mediafax informs. ‘Chery was not the only company that we considered, but after many efforts and market studies in the end it proved to be the best solution,’ Dudy Perry, the general director of Sixt New Kopel, stated.


AmCham recommended 70 amendments before MMFPS


The American Chamber of Commerce in Romania (AmCham) recommended a set of 70 amendments to the Labour Code which might ‘rebalance’ labour market relations, Agerpres reports AmCham officials as saying during a press conference yesterday. According to AmCham, the proposals mainly have in view a rebalancing of the rights and duties of both employers and employees, in the current context and given the labour legislation which it renders ‘bureaucratic and excessively procedural.’


GM takes more time to negotiate over Opel sale


General Motors is taking more time to negotiate with Magna and RHJ International over the planned sale of its European arm Opel, the U.S.-based company said on Tuesday. Canadian auto parts group Magna and Belgium-based RHJ are locked in a takeover battle for Opel, in which GM is relinquishing control in return for state support. German officials and GM representatives are expected to meet with Magna and RHJ this week to further discuss the sale.

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POLITICS

NEWS IN BRIEF

Blaga: Boc to run for president if Basescu doesn’t


The Democrat Liberal Party’s (PDL) general secretary, Vasile Blaga, told a press conference yesterday that he is convinced President Traian Basescu will run for a second term, but added that PM Emil Boc could also be “a clear option”. Blaga underlined that the final decision is with the president. “But Mr. Boc is also a clear option, if the president doesn’t run again. I, personally, have confidence that he will run again,” as he is one of the most popular politicians in Romania, Blaga explained. He added that Boc too is one of the four people that Romanians trust most, according to opinion polls.


Basescu has so far refused to clearly specify whether he will seek a second term. In an interview to the public radio station last week, Basescu said he was very seriously considering not running again, as the economic crisis is more important than his candidacy.


Daily ‘Ziua’ launches anti-president campaign


Daily ‘Ziua’ reported yesterday that it will start a campaign against the re-election of President Traian Basescu, but it will not support any other particular candidate. The decision was made following “President Traian Basescu’s public demand a few days ago that all media openly say how they will approach this year’s presidential campaign,” the newspaper said. The publication also explained the reasons why it will conduct this campaign against Basescu, as follows: the contempt for public money and its use for personal purposes, in election campaigns, promoting businesspeople who are part of groups of interests close to him, the systematic attempt to control the legal system and Parliament, using corruption files to blackmail his rivals. Moreover, the newspaper accuses Basescu of having placed the government at his orders by naming “puppets” in the Boc cabinet and in security structures, of placing personal interests above national interest, of betraying and destroying the political career of the people who previously supported him, of promoting nepotism and his daughter Elena Basescu’s entrance in the European Parliament, of leading an absurd fight against the media and of increasing the presidential administration’s budget at a time of crisis. Last but not least, the paper also criticised Basescu’s “blunders” in foreign policy, such as Romania’s humiliation in its ties with the Republic of Moldova.


PNTCD might support Prince Radu for president


The National Christian-Democrat Agrarian Party (PNTCD) might support Prince Radu in the race for president, at least in the first round of voting, according to PNTCD Galati leader Marian Popa, quoted by daily ‘Gardianul’. Popa said he would make a proposition in this direction at the party’s September 12 congress. “My opinion is that we shouldn’t have our own candidate in the presidential elections. We should let the other parties worry about this political battle and in our congress, we will decide who to support,” Popa said. He added that this would be an “interesting stance” because Radu Duda is a young man and is well trained and educated. “I saw him in TV shows and he is a special man and knows how to answer a question. Even is he doesn’t win now, he will surely become president in the next elections,” Popa said.

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