Foreign Investors Council (FIC) elected on 13 June its new executive team after having had elections for a new Board of Directors at the end of May. Ramona Jurubiță, Country Managing Partner KPMG Romania is the new FIC president and she will be supported by Eric Stab, Chairman & CEO of Engie Romania and Georgios Stassis, CEO & Country Manager, Enel Romania as vice-presidents. Daniel Anghel, PwC Board member and Tax and Legal Services Leader, has been appointed as treasurer.
Franz Weiler, CEO of UNIQA Asigurări, ended his second mandate as FIC president on 13 June but remains on the FIC Board: “It was a challenging time to be the President of one of the most important business organizations representing foreign investors in Romania. These have not been the easiest years if I am to judge from political context and legislative perspective. Our community was faced with several emergency ordinances which have shaken the trust of investors, starting with the famous transfer of contributions from employers to employees and ending with OUG 114/2018. This is probably the reason why FDI flows in Romania have been rather flat in spite of high economic growth and considering the investments needs of the country. The growth was good for business and we do not shy away from saying that. What we have argued with public authorities was the need of a long-term and sustainable view of development and a gradual departure from short-term measures. As the social and economic environment is changing, FIC is changing as well and the most important transformation is that we have become more engaged in the public sphere and in explaining what foreign investment is and its contribution to the economy. The negative discourse against foreign companies took us a little bit by surprise. Of course, companies are made of people and people make mistakes. There is nothing wrong in a public debate on a specific case, on the contrary this is how it should be. What we disagreed with is a line of discourse with no fact evidences which says that foreigners have come here to take advantage of Romania. This is plainly wrong as foreign investors have contributed significantly to the country’s development in the past 20 years. We take it as a mission of our community to explain this”.
Ramona Jurubiță has been serving in the FIC Board since 2017 and between January and July this year she also holds the position of coordinator of Coalitia pentru Dezvoltarea Romaniei, on behalf of FIC.
“It’s a great honour and a challenge to take up this position, and I would like to thank the Board members for investing me with their confidence. Romania should be aiming for full economic convergence with Western European economies. This is perfectly achievable, but to do it we have to tackle our huge investment needs, particularly in infrastructure. While effective use of Romanian government financing and EU funds is vitally important for development, the private sector must also play a critical role. So, I would like to see the government work to rebuild the confidence of the private sector in the authorities and recognise the important impact which private companies have on promoting economic growth and prosperity for all. The recent measures to mitigate the worst effects of OUG 114/2018 are a step in the right direction, and I hope we can continue to make progress in strengthening the relationship between the state and the private sector. If we develop a positive partnership, this works in everybody’s interests and we can create an economy with a flourishing private sector and strong public services. We need to encourage both FDI and domestic investment – many of the top companies operating in Romania today are a mixture of local and foreign capital and talent. Within the FIC Board we have representatives from a wide range of industries, so we are well placed to support the authorities with expertise and knowhow on how to encourage broad ranging, sustainable economic growth. FIC will also continue to work together with our colleagues from Coalitia pentru Dezvoltarea Romaniei in order to have a common voice on major issues of concern for the economy. I am looking forward to working with my colleagues from the executive team, Eric, Georgios and Daniel and with the entire FIC Board to deal with the exciting challenges we have ahead of us”.