ARTS & LEISURE

NEWS IN BRIEF

Celebration of Saints Michael and Gabriel


The Orthodox and the Greek-Catholics celebrated on Sunday the Archangels Michael and Gabriel, considered, in the Christian tradition, the leaders of the armies of angels and soul guides to the faithful on their way to Paradise. Archangel Gabriel, whose name translates into “My defender is God,” is considered the messenger of the good news. He announced to Saints Parents Joachim and Ana the birth of Virgin Mary. The good news – the birth of the Saviour – reads the Holy Bible, was brought to the Virgin Mary by the same Archangel Gabriel. According to the Christian tradition, Archangel Gabriel was the angel dressed in white who overturned the stone placed on the door to the grave of Christ, and is acknowledged as a witness to the resurrection of God. Gabriel is represented in icons as the carrier of a divine sign – a lily. Over 1,280,000 Romanians celebrated on Sunday their name day, on the occasion of the celebration of Saints Archangels Michael and Gabriel.


Romania featured in New York “Cucuteni” exhibit


Romania participates in “The Lost World of Old Europe: The Danube Valley, 5000 – 3500 BC, an international exhibit dedicated to the Cucuteni civilization, hosted by the New York University Center for Ancient Studies and containing 250 items from three countries, the Romanian Cultural Institute (ICR) announced. Romania contributes most of the items on display – 175 – from 19 museums in the country. Among the works presented, “The Thinker”, and his pair, from Cernavoda, a number of anthropomorphic vases and some of the first objects made of gold and copper found in Europe. The National History Museum of Romanian History (MNIR) is the main organizer and partner in the event.


Magyar film selection for Bucharest moviegoers


The Week of the Magyar Film in Bucharest, event which is at the third edition, will take place in the period November 9-14, at the National Art Centre “Tinerimea Romana.” This year, the festival will include six feature films (projected every evening), nine short reel films (projected on November 13), and eight documentaries (run on November 14). Access is free. The festival opens with “I am not your friend” directed by Palfi Gyorgy, at the projection being expected the actors Fatyol Kamilla, Szulek Istvan and Gosztonyi Csaba. Then, the audience will see every evening, starting at 19.00 h. the films “Emission” by Vranik Roland, a “negative utopia” about the power of television and the subjugation of the people by this power, “Prima primavera” by Edelenyi Janos, which presents the pilgrimage of two persons who depend on each other, towards the desired target, “Intimate suicide” by Szajki Peter, a human show which penetrates into the secrets of the relations of a couple, reaching the soul through the body, which will be run in the presence of the director. Other films will be “A sort of America 2,” by Herendi Garbor, projected in the presence of the second director Spah David, a continuation of the homonym film from 2002, which became the favourite number one of the Magyar film lovers, and the Romanian-British Magyar co-production “Katalin Varga” by Peter Strickland, which will run, starting on November 13, in the cinema houses from Romania. The feature films will be presented every evening by the film specialist Radu Igazsag.

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Spring weather continues
in the next days



After the weeks with winter temperatures a bit over three degrees C, the Southeast of the country had spring temperatures of up to 20 degrees C on Saturday and Sunday. Today, the weather remains warm for this time of the year in most regions of the country, with values from 10 degrees C in North Moldova to 20, 21 degree C in South Muntenia, although the maximum temperatures lose up to 3, 4 degrees C in the North and Northeast. It will rain, especially in Maramures, Transilvania and Oltenia, the sun being somewhat more generous only in the extreme South. Tomorrow the rains intensify and extend in the Western, Northern and Central regions. Little rain or drizzle will be only in the center and South Moldova and the Eastern half of Muntenia and Dobrogea. The maximum temperatures will range from 12 degrees C in North Moldova to 20 degrees C in South Muntenia.


110 Romanians rescued
from forced labor in Cyprus



More than 100 Romanians that were working in appalling conditions in Cyprus have been rescued by the authorities. The Romanian workers were housed in appalling conditions, with no food and water. According to Antena 3, the 110 Romanians were promised labor contracts but once in Cyprus they were housed in appalling labor camps that had no running water or heat and were forced to work without contracts. In most of the cases the Romanians were not paid or were given EUR 20 per week at most. The Cyprus police have arrested a 38 year old man. Alin Serbanescu, the spokesperson of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, stated yesterday for Agerpres that the Romanian Embassy in Nicosia will help out the exploited Romanians find a job or return to Romania.

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Chamber of Trade Law sent
for reexamination to Parliament



President Traian Basescu declared on Friday that he would send back to the Legislative for reexamination the law through which the National Office of the Trade Registry is transferred from the Justice Ministry under the authority of the Chambers of Trade. “(…) I had a discussion with the president of the National Council of the SMEs and I understand that the Law regarding the Chambers of Trade is extremely inconvenient for the business circles, so all that I have to do is to assure you that I shall send it back to Parliament,” Traian Basescu told the participants to the National Top private firms in Romania. The Deputies passed at the beginning of the past week the legislative proposal to shift the Trade Registry Offices from the Justice Ministry to the Chambers of Trade with 242 votes “for,” 36 votes “against” and 8 abstentions.


Although introduced hastily, minimum tax had also good sides


The elimination of the minimum tax or the reformulation of the criteria subject to which it was introduced, this is what the representatives of the National Council of the Small and Medium sized Enterprises from Romania (CNIPMMR) present at a debate over the European fiscal practices, requested on Friday, Agerpres informs. One of the accusations leveled by Ovidiu Nicolescu, CNIPMMR president, was the lack of transparency of the taxation method in Romania. He sustained the idea of the fiscal transparency and suggested even the setting up of a tripartite commission to supervise the way in which the money borrowed from IMF, EU and WB is spent. Others proposed to apply the lump tax, that could replace the minimum tax, only to the firms which have a small turnover and want to get rid of the bureaucracy required to pay the taxes and file regularly reports and forms. Referring to the good practice examples at European level, Alex Massaci from PricewaterhouseCoopers said, among others, that the productivity of the European SMEs, which is smaller than that of the American ones, must be backed.


Arpechim refinery cuts hundreds
of jobs



Several hundreds of employees from the Petrochemistry section of Arpechim Pitesti oil refinery were announced on Friday they will lose their jobs, as activity in the section has been discontinued for over a year, Mediafax reports. The employees are waiting for the government to step up the process of Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea taking over the petrochemical operations of Arpechim, which would save their jobs. The personnel due to be made redundant will receive full pay for 60 days and, if the takeover is not completed during this interval, they will be made redundant and will receive compensation payments depending on seniority. The Petrochemical section is in conservation for more than a year and all through this period, the staff came to work for normal 8-hour shifts, even though all installations were shut down.


Romania is cleared to export pork since 2010


Starting January 1st 2010, Romania will be allowed to export pork meat and pork products originating in the European Union’s regions free of classic swine flu, the National Sanitary Veterinary and Food Safety Authority (ANSVSA) announced. In these conditions, local pork processing units that operate in outsourcing regime, with meat imported from EU countries free of classic swine influenza, will be allowed to deliver on the European single market pork products bearing Romanian brands. In order to be cleared for export, these units must be able to prove the source of the raw meat they process. The European Commission decided to unblock meat exports for Romania, on Wednesday, November 4, with unanimity of votes, during the meeting of the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health (SCFCAH) in Brussels.

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Renault to make electric car in Spain


MADRID – French auto maker Renault said on Friday it would build its new electric car based on the Twizy Z.E. Concept at its Valladolid plant in northern Spain. Renault chose Valladolid for its know-how and competitiveness in making compact cars, and Spain for its proximity to the electric car’s target market of Western Europe.”With the production of the vehicle based on the Twizy Z.E. Concept, Valladolid will be the first factory in Spain to mass produce an electric vehicle,” Jean Pierre Laurent, managing director of Renault in Spain, said in a statement. Production of the new electric car at the Valladolid plant will begin in 2011.


Dacia turns down rumours about new SUV


The representatives of Automobile Dacia denied the information which appeared in the past few days, that the new SUV to be manufactured at Romanian plant in Mioveni will be called Duster and will cost between EUR 16,000 and 19,500, Agerpres informs. “The information connected with the price of the new Dacia SUV is mere speculation, without support. First, it is much too early to speak about catalogue prices many months before the official launching of the model. The price is the last element to be settled and, as a rule, this is decided one month before the launching of a model is scheduled,” declared Silviu Sepciu, chief of media relation office, Automobile Dacia.

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ARB: Romanian entrepreneurs
waiting for political crisis to end



Romanian entrepreneurs won’t withdraw the loan money lent by banks, as they wait for the ongoing political crisis to come to an end, the president of the Romanian Banking Association (ARB), Radu Gratian, told Realitatea TV recently, Agerpres reported. Referring to savings interest rates, he said it is the market that dictates them.The ARB president holds that the National Bank of Romania and the Finance Ministry have solutions for pensions and salaries to be paid. He also said that, ‘for Romania, the amount of EUR 20 bln borrowed from international financial institutions shows we are in the close-to-high area. It is not an exaggerated sum but a rather high one though, which should give us food for thought over what to do not to increase further,’ Ghetea said, who recommended those who lost their jobs and are unable to pay back their loans to contact the bank before debts extend beyond 90 days.


Cheaper tickets on Tarom under “Winter Marathon” programme


Tarom has put on sale return tickets at the price of EUR 9 (plus airport taxes) to Budapest, Thessaloniki and Athens in the period November 7-22, under the “Winter Marathon” campaign, a press release of the flight company informs. The price of the tickets, taxes included, rises to EUR 92 for Bucharest-Budapest flight, EUR 93 for Bucharest-Thessaloniki flight, and EUR 113 for Bucharest-Athens flight. The return tickets for these destinations, purchased during November 7-November 22 can be used with departure from Bucharest in the period November 16-22, 2009. Tarom operates 12 flights a week on the route Bucharest-Sofia-Bucharest, four flights a week with stopover during the night on the route Bucharest-Venice-Bucharest, and daily flights on the route Bucharest-Rome-Bucharest. During the campaign, the destinations will change every week.


US gold closes strong, off USD 1,100/oz, on weak jobs


NEW YORK – U.S. gold futures finished Friday moderately higher, pulling off from the USD 1,100 per ounce all-time high, but remaining strong as investors sought their safety after the October U.S. labor market data came in much weaker than expected, traders said. Gold was also underpinned by expectations of renewed central bank interest after an IMF sale of 200 tonnes of gold to India this week – traders. U.S. employers cut 190,000 jobs in October greater than the 175,000 forecast. The unemployment rate rose to 10.2 percent, a 26-1/2-year high above average forecasts of a 9.9 percent rate. Dollar declines against the yen and the euro over worries about the U.S. economy following slack jobs figures helped bolster gold purchases.


Romtelecom provides
unemployment insurance



Romtelecom launches on the local telecom market the first service of insurance against unemployment, aimed at its individual clients who choose to activate any telecom service – Voice, Clicknet or Dolce – the company announces in a press release. The free insurance is the result of a partnership between Romtelecom and Astra Uniqa – the largest insurance company with majority Romanian capital, and it consists in subsidizing subscription fees for Romtelecom services for a six-month period, in case of unemployment. The insurance is valid a year since its activation and also covers the situations when the client dies or becomes disabled. Through this initiative, Romtelecom wants to provide its clients with extra safety and financial comfort in the context of the present economic crisis, writes the release.

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