President Basescu is sorely upset with the trade unions, employers’ organisations, the opposition parties, the press, and decided no longer to attend talks on the Agreement with the IMF.
Traian Basescu will no longer attend talks on the agreement with the IMF, this was the announcement made on Tuesday evening in a television transmission, from Cotroceni Palace, after the tensed – according to some of the participants –meeting he had at lunch with the Government, trade unions and patronages, on the austerity measures agreed upon with the International Monetary Fund.
Why is the head of state upset with “the ‘merry’ people in politics, the press, trade unions and the business environment”?
“I detected today (Tuesday – n.r.) an innuendo which, in fact, determined my response of announcing all participants that the Presidency will no longer attend such a format. It was an innuendo to the effect that the Government and Presidency took measures against the Romanian people. I definitely reject such an approach. The solution that the Government and I proposed to the Romanian is a solution reflecting what Romania is able to do now and is an alternative to the rapid growth of the country’s indebtedness rate,” the president said.
Basescu vehemently attacked the representatives of the opposition parties, the Social-Democratic Party (PSD) and the National Liberal Party (PNL), which refused to attend the meeting mediated by the head of state at the Parliament Palace on Tuesday. “The fact that many of those who failed to attend express their opinion forces me to make a clarification, given that the Romanian people also need the truth, in the end, as opposed to the lies of those keen to undermine the people’s solidarity in present circumstances, because that’s what they’re used to, to live comfortably, they’ve amassed wealth, they’ve grown rich at times of unbalance.” He iterated that Romania did not have another alternative to get through these difficult times.
He brought the arguments to prove it: first and foremost, figures. “I see everyone coming up with solutions, parties are rushing to announce their solutions on TV, but their solutions are not backed by figures. Therefore, these amateurs I consider promoters of an action to misinform the Romanians. When I’m presented with solutions backed by figures, foreseeable, starting from our economic realities, backed, again, by figures, I will consider them alternative solutions. Until then, we’re left with the two alternatives we discussed with the Fund: raising taxes, alongside reducing the wages of state employees by 20 per cent, or the one we’ve adopted, opposing any tax raise and reducing expenses within the state and social security budget,” Traian Basescu said.
Another argument of the president was the fact that, even after signing the agreement with the IMF, Romania will be forced to loan about EUR 5 M from the credit market to pay pensions and wages. “If we did not have an agreement with the Monetary Fund, I’ve heard some launching this hypothesis as well; the state budget deficit for this year would amount to EUR 11.7 bln, that is, a 9.1 per cent deficit. I therefore ask the ‘merry’ men in politics, in the press, in trade unions, in the business environment: how could Romania loan EUR 11.7 bln to cover its deficit without an agreement with the Fund?” the head of state asked.
In his opinion, those who claim they have solutions to emerge from the recession, though these solutions do not rely on “figures and [on] the truth”, actually mean to “stir chaos” in the country. “There are a lot of people who want to bring back the ‘90s, when they made fortunes out of the disorder. (…) An alternative solution, if brought up, may exist. I can only claim having chosen the right solution,” the president said.
According to PSD, Basescu’s statements confirm that the head of state is trying to offer justifications for “having pushed Romania into a disastrous situation, owing to inaccurate measures and to the Boc Cabinet’s failure to act”. “On what authority can the president still bring up figures, given that the Government he supports with all his might lied to the people about Romania’s actual situation?” is shown in a release of the Social-Democrats. PSD also points out that “the president failed to mention the expenses in goods and services contracted by the Boc Cabinet in the first months of 2010, the irrational transfer of funds from the Government to local administration or the ruling party’s political clientele which soaks up most of the public money”.
The president of PNL, Crin Antonescu, said that Romania is, at the moment, in a dramatic situation and that the real political crisis springs from the fact that, at the moment, “the power lies in the hands of a man acting irresponsibly”. “Those who oppose his plan are chaos-breeders, destabilising elements, people who wish to get rich. An individual who made a fortune out of the disorders of the ‘90s is Mr. Basescu himself. I am not one (…) We talk to no avail, we’re in the midst of a dictatorship, we no longer have a Parliament, we no longer have a Government. Everyone simply has to go to the sultan to beg for a little bit of this or that,” Antonescu said, for Realitatea TV.