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October 4, 2022

Minister Intotero: Working to identify best policies for homeward-bound Romanians to come back

The authorities are directing their efforts towards identifying “the best policies” for Romanians in the diaspora who want to return home to do so, Minister for Romanians Abroad Natalia Intotero told Agerpres  in an interview.

“We are working to identify the best policies to encourage the citizens who want to return home to do so, because we need each and every citizen of ours,” Intotero said.

“The Romanian community in Italy is the largest worldwide, with about 1,200,000 citizens living there. The strongest community is in northern Italy, in the regions of Lombardy and Piedmont. In Italy, and all over the world, we have Romanians of various social categories, workers, doctors, teachers, engineers, academics, researchers. They all do their country honor. The Romanians have this desire to return home at a certain moment. In this regard, our main priority at the Ministry for Romanians Abroad is education. We finance projects in various fields of activity, such as education, culture, Romanian language media, spirituality, encouraging Romanians to form associations and further unite these associations – the ideal variant – in foundations, for greater power to implement the projects supporting the community,” Intotero says.

“I want to assure all Romanians that their remittances are safe and that nothing has changed in the procedures required to send money home or for collecting the money,” the Minister said in response to rumors that Bucharest would be planning to tax the Romanians’ remittances to their families home.

“What we are trying to do right now, because there is a homeward trend of the Romanians, is to set in place the necessary policies to encourage homeward-bound Romanians to take this step safely. We all know that Romania is currently facing a workforce shortage and together with several colleague ministers, as well as with lawmakers, we are working to implement these policies, in an attempt to encourage the Romanians who want to return home to do so,” Intotero said.

“The concerns of our citizens who reside in the UK are related to the possibility to further stay in the UK, work contracts, residence, there are also the students in the UK. We assure those with legal documents that nothing bad will happen to them, that they will be able to stay, and approaches are being made in this respect; our advice for those who have not yet completed their paperwork is to complete it for being able to remain in the UK. For those who return home, besides the measures which have been taken so far, especially in health care – we already had lots of doctors returning home as a result of the enforcement of the uniform pay law – the wages are almost the same, they are balanced, just as abroad. We have the Start-Up Diaspora program. Through the involvement of the Ministry of European Funds, those who want to open a business can do so in the country. The Start Up Nation program, a fresh edition, will kick off in the coming period, somewhere in July, and of course those willing to return home can apply under this program. Apart from that, we are working on identifying the best policies for homeward-bound citizens to come back because we need each and every citizen of ours,” the Minister said.

“I have every time encouraged the Romanians who do not want to return home to be more active in the community they decided to live in. For instance, I was glad to see that in Castellon we have a Romanian local councilor, but it’s not just Castellon, [Romanians hold offices] in many communities. We have mayors as well,” concluded the Minister for Romanians Abroad.

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