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February 4, 2023

President Traian Basescu makes balance sheet of his ten-year term: many satisfactions and achieved things, but also regrets and failures

In his last press conference from the Cotroceni Palace, President Traian Basescu on Saturday thanked Romanians for the honour of being head of state for ten years, showing that he would not forget this honour as long as he lived, informs Agerpres.”I want to thank Romanians for the honour they gave me of being their president for ten years. It is an honour that I, my wife and family will not forget as long as we live, it is an honour for which I feel I have the obligation to continue to contribute in reaching the objectives Romanians have,” the head of state said in a press conference. He underscored that it was a press conference and not an activity report on his presidential mandate. Moreover, Basescu showed he wanted to take a real picture of Romania, “not the one he sees distorted on television, broadcast by people who don’t use the real figures of Romania.” President Basescu recommended those “who are in TV studios, ready to demolish, to read.” Thus, the head of state mentioned he would present three vital topics for Romania: security, Romania and the EU and the rule of law.


Basescu’s supreme satisfaction is that PSD and PNL talk about the rule of law


Basescu  said that the supreme satisfaction of his mandate is that, after the presidential elections, the Social Democrats and the Liberals talk about the justice independence and the rule of law, underscoring that they must internalize this discourse. “Maybe this is the supreme satisfaction of my mandate, that, since November 17, both PSD [the Social Democratic Party] and the Liberals have the justice independence and the rule of law in their discourse, they need some time to internalize this thing, to be convinced that without the rule of law there is no democratic state,” Basescu said in his last press conference as Romania’s president in office.He brought to mind that for this type of discourse he was suspended twice. “When they internalize this discourse we shall have the guarantee that the reform in justice is irreversible,” Basescu said.


“After you have been president, you don’t want to be prime minister”


When asked if he had the prime minister office in view, said that his only thought was to go home, adding that he would use an office at the People’s Movement Party (PMP), but that he had no political projects yet. “I have only one thought: I want to go home. Today we christened Raducu (e.n. the President’s grandson), another grandson will be born in February. I shall definitely not be the man who can stay at home. I shall definitely use an office of the PMP starting on Monday, but I have no political projects for now, I shall mainly be in motion,” Basescu said at the Cotroceni Palace. When asked if he did not thus rule out the option of becoming prime minister, he said: “After you have been president, you don’t want to be prime minister.”


One of president  Basescu’s regrets: “Introducing single-member constituency voting, because it was a total failure”


President Traian Basescu also said on Saturday that one of the regrets of his mandate is introducing single-member constituency voting, regarding it as a “total failure”. “I feel extraordinary frustration for having unpleasant idea of introducing single-member constituency voting, because it was a total failure. It started off as an idea for people to know who to vote for, it wound up in debate in the civil society and Mr. Professor Parvulescu has a great merit here, the weighted single-member constituency voting, which has led to this monster of a Parliament with 590 members of Parliament. So, it is a major failure that I have supported”, said the head of state, at the Cotroceni Palace.
Basescu said he has many failures, but the single-member constituency voting was “astounding”. He confided that another failure of his was revising the Constitution.
“Too bad it wasn’t done, but it would be a great risk if it were done only for the sake of doing it. I sent to Parliament a revisal project that changes none of the fundamentals of the current Constitution, that I believe to be a good Constitution in its principles, but only clarified some articles that left room for interpretation. In the amendments proposed I even took into account the CCR [Constitutional Court of Romania] decisions. (…) The Constitution revisal is another failure”, Basescu showed.


Romanians can be optimistic about the evolution of the country’s economy


President Traian Basescu also said that Romanians can be optimistic in what concerns the evolution of the Romanian economy, maintaining that the prospect is of economic growth. “I would say that Romanians can be optimistic in what concerns the evolution of the Romanian economy and the capacity of generating resources for increasing the living standard,” Basescu said at the Cotroceni Palace. He said that this thing is owed to the direct foreign investments, but also to the important structural reforms that took place, mentioning the liberalisation of the labour market. “This step that pulled us out of the communist era of the lifetime labour contract was the one that has led to growth,” the head of state showed. President Traian Basescu mentioned that Romania only had two years of economic crisis out of ten, in 2009 and 2010, in the rest of the period having registered positive economic growth. “Romania’s prospect is one of economic growth, which can be secured on European money, direct foreign investments,” Basescu said. He also mentioned the reforms in education, the pension system and justice.


Romania to become a member of the eurozone earlier than 2019


President Traian Basescu claims that Romania will become a member of the eurozone earlier than 2019. “We have integrated in the labor market, we have fulfilled the convergence criteria, the Maastricht criteria, and we will probably, as the Government has planned, become members of the eurozone, I believe, earlier than 2019. I believe. We are with the technical criteria, and I hope that after this CVM [Cooperation and Verification Mechanism] report with the justice and political criteria, too, fulfilled, in order to start accession for the Schengen area”, said the head of state on Saturday, at the Cotroceni Palace.


Recent legislation may prevent cybernetic and terrorist attacks


President Traian Basescu said the recent legislation regarding cybernetic security may prevent terrorist and cybernetic attacks on Romania, yet he emphasized that there is a need for care in what regards the control mechanism. “We must be very careful and I am speaking here of the control mechanism, so that no-one will even think of reaching abuse, because the internet has become a way of life”, said the head of state at the Cotroceni Palace.


Commissioner Pierre Moscovici to have a talk on Monday with Finance Minister on  Army  budget


Basescu told journalists gathered on Saturday at the Cotroceni Palace for his last press conference in the capacity of Romania’s head of state that he discussed with European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker, who asked European Commissioner Pierre Moscovici to have a talk with the Romanian Finance Minister in view to finding a solution through which the budget deficit can be increased by 0.3 per cent for the Army, Agerpres also reported.”Because I have seen that the communication through the media is very much resorted to, I inform Mr Minister Dusa that I have spoken with Jean Claude Juncker, who asked Commissioner Moscovici to have a talk on Monday with the Finance Minister of Romania in view to finding a formula through which the deficit can be increased by 0.3 per cent, but it depends how they will back this idea, as otherwise Romania would fulfill all parameters that would justify an extra deficit for equipping the Army,” Basescu told a press conference.





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