Monday, October 27, 2008

Romania's President Approves Pay Rise

24 October 2008
Bucharest _ Romanian President Traian Basescu said on Friday that he will support a controversial law which will increase teachers' wages by 50 per cent.

On September 30, Parliament unanimously approved the salary increase, saying the country's good economic performance allows for the move. However the rise is opposed by the government who fears that an increase of over nine per cent is not financially feasible and will severely damage Romania's economy.

"There is no reason not to approve the law as it was enacted by Parliament. I assure you that the money to be given to teachers is far less than the amount which is not used by the government, from EU funds, for building new roads, for example," Basescu said.

Prime Minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu did not want to comment on the President's decision, but announced a government meeting for Saturday in order to analyse the side effects of such an increase.

Economists are concerned about the measure's potential impact on Romania's consumption-driven, overheated economy.

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