POLITICS

Basescu urges opposition to end boycott

Ruling parties will sign a protocol in support of Romania’s ratification of the EU Fiscal Governance Treaty and will forward it to the opposition.

Ruling parties will sign a protocol in support of Romania’s ratification of the EU Fiscal Governance Treaty, the leaders of PDL, UDMR and UNPR announced yesterday after their consultations with President Traian Basescu. The protocol will then be forwarded to opposition parties, parties that did not attend the consultations. The opposition turned down the Head of State’s invitation, arguing that the issues on the agenda were not of top priority for them, the priority being the heavy snowfalls and the problems that they have created. Nevertheless, PSD announced yesterday that it will organize today in Parliament a debate on the fiscal pact.

PDL was represented by party president Emil Boc, but also by Vasile Blaga and Roberta Anastase, the speakers of the two chambers of Parliament. At the end of the talks Boc stated that PDL supports the signing of the fiscal governance treaty and its ratification in Parliament and that it is natural for Romania to agree with its stipulations since it meets a lot of the economic indicators included in the treaty. “Within the coalition we will sign an agreement in order to support Romania’s ratification of this treaty. The agreement will be forwarded to the other Parlia­mentary parties because national interest is at stake. The ball is in the opposition’s court, we invite them once again to take part in dialogue on the signing of the treaty but also on other issues of public interest,” Boc stated.

In his turn, UDMR President Kelemen Hunor pointed out that UDMR believes that Romania should adhere to fiscal governance considering that no EU member state will be able to overcome the economic and financial crisis on its own. At the same time he pointed out that the opposition should join this initiative and that UDMR considers that ruling and opposition parties should talk not only about the fiscal governance treaty but about other issues too. In this context, UDMR President Kelemen Hunor opined that USL’s Parliamentary strike is not a solution. “I believe that the 15 points listed by Mr. Ponta can be discussed at any point. No responsible man will make an electoral and political game out of this agreement on fiscal governance,” the UDMR leader added. UNPR Honorary President Cristian Diaconescu pointed out that “irrespective of political moves, such an act would ensure stability.”

President deems possible negotiations with opposition

Several hours after the consultations ended, President Traian Basescu called on the opposition, during a press statement, to return to Parliament in order to sign the fiscal governance treaty. “The treaty is not the President’s urgency. If we decide to sign it we will have to sign it on March 1 and the signing procedures have to be prepared. We don’t have much time left,” the Head of State said. According to him, the treaty cannot be signed without the support of all Parliamentary parties. “The proposal was to sign a protocol at the level of all Parliamentary parties. There has to be a Parliamentary majority because the treaty cannot be signed on March 1 in the absence of a protocol. (…) A political decision has to be taken in time and has to be communicated to Brussels in time,” the President said.
Basescu also pointed out that he asked the parties to start negotiations so that the opposition will return to Parliament. “This weekend I analyzed the Ungureanu Government’s governing programme and the 15 points listed in Victor Ponta’s speech (given last Thursday at the investiture of the new government – editor’s note) and I concluded that 7 points coincide. So there is a solid base for discussions for the opposition’s return to Parliament,” the Head of State concluded.

USL boycott continues

The Social-Liberal Union (USL) announced yesterday morning that it will not take part in consultations with President Traian Basescu. “We won’t attend the consultations. Our agenda and the President’s agenda differ. For us what has been happening for over a week now represents something really important in relation to which we have to do something. The issues proposed by the President are not issues on our agenda, these great difficulties which our fellow citizens are experiencing are. We are constantly in touch with our local representatives, with our MPs, we helped out in various manners,” PNL President Crin Antonescu stated at the end of the USL meeting. The PNL leader also explained that another reason for which USL refused to accept the Head of State’s invitation consists of President Basescu’s “unacceptable” attitude displayed during previous consultations that concerned the appointment of the PM. “The attitude concerning the resignation of the Boc Government was unacceptable. We talked for naught, it was but a formality, and he didn’t even tell us the name of the Premier. Consequently, we don’t see why we should hold talks on these issues. Our position is clear, it’s public,” Antonescu stated. At the same time he announced that the opposition’s Parliamentary strike will continue.

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