Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Romanian Cabinet Seeks Fast-Track Approval of Election Law

By Andra Timu

Dec. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Romania’s government wants to have fast-track approval of a law merging general and local elections, avoiding a long debate in Parliament, Prime Minister Emil Boc said.

The measure is one of two bills the government wants to push through without discussion by linking them to a confidence measure. The other would aim to making judicial appointment to the High Court of Justice transparent, Boc said. The opposition would then have the chance to file a corresponding no-confidence vote as it seeks to topple the Cabinet.

“We want the elections to be organized at the same date because 2012 is a tough year from an economic point of view and we must avoid any slippage,” Boc said during a press conference in Bucharest. “We could save about 20 million euros ($27 million) from the state’s budget by merging elections.”

Boc’s ruling coalition has a 246-vote majority in the 470- member Parliament. It has survived six no-confidence votes since it introduced austerity measures last year to lower the budget deficit and meet pledges to the International Monetary Fund and the European Union.

The Social Democrats and the Liberals, which form the country’s opposition, will file a no-confidence vote and try to oust Boc, Victor Ponta, the social democratic head said. That vote may take place on Dec. 22, Roberta Anastase, the head of the Parliament’s lower house, told reporters.

The government cut public wages and increased a value-added tax in July 2010. It wants to reduce the budget gap to 1.9 percent of gross domestic product from an anticipated 4.4 percent of GDP this year.

--With assistance from Irina Savu in Bucharest. Editor: James M. Gomez

To contact the reporter on this story: Andra Timu in Bucharest at atimu@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at jagomez@bloomberg.net

No comments: