Friday, April 19, 2013

Romania abandons target date for joining euro

Romania has dropped setting a target date for adopting the euro, although officials insisted that joining the single currency remains a fundamental objective for the country, according to reports.

The Romanian news agency Mediafax said the Romanian government would submit to the European Commission for the first time a programme on progress towards adoption of the euro without a target date.

Romania had previously been targeting 2015 to adopt the single European currency, but President Traian Basescu said last month that date was now "unfeasible".

Prime Minister Victor Ponta estimated last month that 2020 would be more realistic.

Mr Ponta insisted that "eurozone entry remains a fundamental objective for Romania but we can't enter poorly prepared, as that would first of all be bad for us and also for the other members of the eurozone", in comments reported by Mediafax.

Romania agreed to eventually adopt the euro under the terms of its 2007 entry into the European Union, but there is no deadline.

The country has reduced its public deficit below the 3pc of national output - one of the entry conditions stipulated by the Maastricht Treaty.

But Romanian authorities have repeatedly missed targets agreed on with the International Monetary Fund and the EU on appointing professional managers and privatising state-owned companies.

Mr Basescu warned last month that unless the competitiveness of the Romanian economy was improved that "joining the eurozone will end as a failure".

Poland has also recently pushed back a decision on setting a date to join the eurozone to after 2015.

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