The economic relations are remarkably dynamic, Switzerland being in top 10 foreign investors in Romania.
Thus, trade exchanges between Romania and Switzerland stood last year at about EUR 300 million, Manuel Costescu, State Secretary in the Ministry of Economy and head of the Department for Foreign Investment and Public – Private Partnership (DISPPP) said Monday attending the Romania – Switzerland Investment Forum.
Challenges and opportunities for investors, reform of educational and fiscal systems were among the topics of discussion.
“Romania is still unknown for someone who wants to invest. Romania has a growing economy where all EU regulations are complied. (…) Switzerland invests more than 150 percent of GDP. Therefore, we would like to see you more present in Romania. You have mountains covering 60 percent of the country. We do not have sufficient transport infrastructure and, of course, we want to accelerate its creation. Romania has 70 industrial parks. Do not hesitate to come to these parks,” Costescu stated.
He argued, however, that Romania is the second most competitive destination in Europe for labor force, with clear laws.
“VAT, social security, corporate fees, reinvested profit in Romania is exempt from taxation, all these things are beneficial,” Costescu also added.
As a member of the European Union (EU), Romania is one of the beneficiaries of Switzerland’s contribution to reduce economic and social disparities in the expanded EU.
The diplomatic relations between Romania and the Swiss Confederation were established in 1911 at legation level and were raised to embassy level on December 24, 1962. Romania and Switzerland are linked by an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement as well as a double taxation agreement. Since Romania joined the EU, the bilateral agreements between Switzerland and the EU also apply to Romania (subject to quotas until 2014 in the sphere of free movement of persons).
In his turn, Costin Borc, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Economy said that the investments can go to many areas such as tourism and the research – development – innovation. He also stated: “I do not want Romania to remain a low-cost destination in the employment area.”