Tuesday, March 10, 2009

BUCHAREST, March 10 (Reuters) - Romania has notified the European Commission it wants medium-term external aid to prevent a financing crisis, the Fin

BUCHAREST, March 10 (Reuters) - Romania has notified the European Commission it wants medium-term external aid to prevent a financing crisis, the Finance Ministry said on Tuesday.

Romania has gone from being the European Union's fastest growing economy last year to one of its most vulnerable in the global financial crisis because of its twin current account and fiscal deficits.

The Finance Ministry said in a statement talks were under way with the EU's executive Commission and the International Monetary Fund to assess Romania's potential financing needs, which economists put at about 20 billion euros.

'Following preliminary discussions, Romanian authorities are looking at accessing medium-term foreign financial assistance, a decision communicated to the European Commission,' it said.

The IMF sends a mission to Bucharest on Wednesday. It has said the programme would be an insurance-based multilateral financing package, to be supported by other international financial institutions including the EU and World Bank.

Romania's representative to the IMF said on Tuesday he sees an IMF-led programme for Romania running for at least two years.

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