President Traian Basescu said yesterday the public sector is neither competitive nor ready for joining the eurozone, noting that Romania could move to the European single currency sometimes in 2017-2018 only of the state economy’s competitiveness parameters improved. ‘I wonder what would happen to the Romanian Railway Company if it was in the eurozone with a very fixed currency, with strict conditions of payment, procurement and services in euro. It would be a disaster because of the lack of competitiveness. What would happen in energy if tomorrow all Romania’s energy facilities had to do all their calculations without counting on the depreciation of the local currency, with a euro that would work as a litmus paper pin-pointing all zones of inefficiency?’ The president said at the event ‘Ten years of Italian companies in Romania’, organised by Confindustria Romania. He stressed the objective of the agreement between Romania and the IMF and EU was to grow the competitiveness of state-owned economy. ‘I hope in two, three, four years’ time we make it and Romania becomes a reliable candidate for the eurozone sometimes in 2017-2018’, the president explained. The IMF Board of Directors will analyse on June 26 whether Romania met the prerequisites for successfully finalising the accord with the financial institution, and if the result is negative, the agreement will be terminated ‘de facto’, government sources announced, quoted by Mediafax. The main prerequisites are paying the arrears to local authorities and the privatisation of CFR Marfa. Paying the arrears to local authorities is a commitment constantly assumed by Romania in the negotiations with the IMF, but which was never observed and PM Victor Ponta said at the beginning of last week that the problem still exists, but can be solved before the meeting of the IMF Board.