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Investments in the Black Sea oil sector to bring USD 26 bn to the state budget

President sends Offshore law back to Parliament

President Klaus Iohannis has asked the Parliament to re-examine the law  establishing measures for the exploitation of Black Sea energy resources, the so-called Offshore Law, arguing it has a particular importance for Romania.

The law had stirred controversies, with many officials slamming it, including ambassadors.

The Presidency informed in a press release on Thursday that the exploitation of the oil and natural gas resources in the offshore areas in the Black Sea basin ‘has a particular importance for Romania, from the perspective of developing the internal market, of the beneficial contribution to the economy’s prosperity and of the Romanian citizens, but also in the light of enhancing the regional energy security.’

In this regard, an efficient and sustainable legislative framework is needed, to be able to ensure a fair distribution of the benefits between the state and the investors, which should contribute to the development of a long term partnership between the two sides, as well as to the enhancement of the confidence in the national economy’s perspectives”, reads the Presidential Administration press release.

The Presidency argues that for these reasons, the law must be re-examined by the lawmakers „in the view of stability and long term predictability of the legal framework enforceable to this sector and to avoid potential negative effects.”

The Presidency also considers that the law should comprise clear provisions to enable a state-investors partnership and so that the Romanian economy should benefit from the natural resources’ exploitation in the Black Sea area on long term.

The Presidential Administration further adds that the law must analysed again as it breaks the principle of non-assignment of the budgetary incomes and that some of its provisions have not been debated in the first chamber of the Parliament.

The Offshore law has stirred fierce controversies, which prompted ruling PSD chairman Liviu Dragnea announce that the Government will adopt an emergency ordinance to „clarify” the draft bill.

US Energy Secretary, Rick Perry, asked the Romanian ambassador in Washington DC, George Maior, that the Romanian authorities assure the concordance between the offshore bill and the annex which includes the calculations for expenditure deduction.

Previously, the US ambassador to Romania, Hans Klemm criticized the way Parliament adopted the offshore bill, arguing that all principles of transparency and negotiation were violated and that the law is debatable.

About Alina Grigoras Butu

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