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COUNCIL RECOMMENDATION on the 2020 National Reform Programme of Romania and delivering a Council opinion on the 2020 Convergence Programme of Romania

The Commission has proposed Wednesday country-specific recommendations (CSRs) providing economic policy guidance to all EU Member States in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, focused on the most urgent challenges brought about by the pandemic and on relaunching sustainable growth.

The recommendations are structured around two objectives: in the short-term, mitigating the coronavirus pandemic's severe negative socio-economic consequences; and in the short to medium-term, achieving sustainable and inclusive growth which facilitates the green transition and the digital transformation.

The recommendations cover areas such as investing in public health and resilience of the health sector, preserving employment through income support for affected workers, investing in people and skills, supporting the corporate sector (in particular small and medium-sized enterprises) and taking action against aggressive tax planning and money laundering. Recovery and investment must go hand-in-hand, reshaping the EU economy faced with the digital and green transitions.

The European Commission recommended Romania to take measures in 2020 and 2021 to meet fhe fiscal policies in line with the recommendations of the Council of 3rd April, according to which Romania should put an end to the present situation of excessive deficit until at most 2022, show the annual recommendations to the 27 member states, called the European Semester, published on Wednesday by the community executive.

At the beginning of April, the Council appreciated that Romania should reach a deficit target which corresponds to an annual structural adjustment of 0.5% of GDP in 2020, of 0.8% of GDP în 2021 and 0.8% of GDP in 2022.

The Commission appreciated in its recommendations that Romania must adopt ‘ all necessary measures to efficiently answer the coronavirus pandemics, to support the economy and to support the relaunching to come’.At the same time, the country’ has to avoid implementing permanent measures which could endanger the fiscal sustainability’ the community executive says.

At the same time, Romania must improve the health system both as regards the employees in the health sector and the medical products and improve access to health services. At the same time, the Romanian authorities must take decisions to extend the social protection measures and access to essential services for all, to counteract the impact of the crisis on the degree of employment through flexible working programmes and ensure equal access to education.
The Commission recommends Romania to ensure a support of liquidity for companies and house holds especially for SMEs and liberal professions, to speed up the investment public projects and to promote private investments.Similarly, the country has to concentrate investments on green and digital transition, especially on sustainable transport, digital infrastructure, production and use of clean energy and environment infrastructure.

Finally, the community executive recommends Romania to improve the quality and efficiency of public administration and the predictability of the process of decision-making, including through adequate involvement of the social partners.

At general level, the European Commission appreciated that the EU member states should concentrate investments on public health and protection of working places and companies, to concentrate later on fiscal sustainability.

The Commission invites the council to adopt specific recommendations for each country and requires the member states to implement them as a whole and in due time.

(See more on https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/2020-european-semester-csr-comm-recommendation-romania_en.pdf)