PM Dacian Ciolos on Thursday released a short balance sheet marking one year in office, stating that “it’s imperiously necessary” that the actions initiated in this period should be continued by the next government. He pointed out that his cabinet put education and healthcare at the heart of their concerns, also stressing that no matter who is coming to rule they must reform public administration.
“We assumed a responsible ruling: we focused on the concern for public resources, we cut off the political clientage from the public money and we started to depoliticize the state companies. We promoted transparency and openness of the state to citizens, as levers to counter corruption, we reduced the red tape and we laid foundations for the modernization and digitalization of the public services,” the premier said.
The balance sheet document has 26 pages and contains the actions taken by the Cabinet led by Dacian Ciolos. The paper reminds the Gov’t got National Agency for Management of Frozen Assets operational, promoted the 2016-2020 National Anti-corruption Strategy, reduced the red tape by cutting the bureaucratic formalities related to the tax revenue body, ANAF. The document also reminds of the GovITHub programme.
“Through the GovITHub programme we set the state free of the catch of several IT companies subscribed to public contracts and we drafted an open, transparent cooperation environment between the state and the experts and entrepreneurs in this sector. Those 20 young scholars together with over 300 volunteers representing the professional IT elite have been brought to the Government and are currently developing electronic systems and facilities to help citizens and companies when addressing the public system,” the documents says.
According to the balance sheet, the state is now granting higher incomes for the education and healthcare employees but also increased pensions.
“We placed healthcare and education at the top of our priorities and we allotted resources to cut the wage inequities in these fields. We have already operated a series of wage rises and corrections: an average 15% rise in healthcare, with about 163,000 doctors receiving higher incomes; an average 10% rise in education, with 280,000 teachers as beneficiaries. The salary corrections involved a budgetary allotment of RON 2.6 billion (…) We ensured the rise of the pension point by 5 percent, going up to RON 871.7,” the premier explained.
The Executive’s document also mentions the concrete actions taken after the Colectiv deadly fire that claimed 64 lives and left another 150 injured.
“We extended the period when the treatment of the injured patients can be discounted by another two years. The money needed for the treatment can be also granted in advance. We extended the Burnt Section at Floreasca Hospital by setting up a post-critical ward comprising 6 beds. The Intensive Care Unit is currently being revamped, with the completion deadline by November-end,” Ciolos pointed out.
The balance sheet also reminds of the subsidies for farmers and the Europen fund absorption, while also including an unfulfillment.
“In the first part of our term we launched a public debate on several topics that should have enabled the public administration reform. Unfortunately, this public debate “didn’t work” and there was no political appetite to deepen this process. Under these circumstances, we took actions to create the necessary framework for such a reform, by concluding the Strategy for the public office and the Strategy for professional training in administration (…) Based on these documents, the future Parliament and Government will have things prepared to finish the public administration reform,” Dacian Ciolos said.
Romania enjoys the biggest economic growth in the EU this year- 5.2% in the first semester and 4.9% in the first nine months, also says the Gov’t balance sheet referring to the economic indicators.
“We managed to maintain the budgetary deficit as stipulated by the Budget law in an electoral year. We are not at 0.49% of the GDP, with the target being 2%. At present, Romania is acknowledged by the European Commission as a country without macroeconomic unbalances at European level. We reached a new minimum threshold for external financing costs, a sign that shows that the level of the foreign investors’ trust in our country is in the rise, while the state aid programmes set up to support the domestic investors enjoyed a very high request, with some of them having their bidgets supplemented in 2016.”
At the same time, the Government one-year balance sheet shows that works on 160 kilometers of highways have been unblocked despite the situation found at the Transport Ministry when the incumbent cabinet took office.
“We included the infrastructure among the priority fields of this year. The situation at the Transport Ministry in November 2015 was disappointing: no highway section had building permits, tens of projects were blocked in drawers, while many contracts had been assigned without having a preliminary documentation,” the Executive points out.