December - 2005

National Day - Romania

State of independence

Consider a takeover or risk being overtaken: this has been the message to domestic firms looking to compete in Europe. But no longer. ‘The Diplomat’ talks to the bosses of companies who (in most cases) will go it alone in the EU

                Romanian enterprises will have to look, whether they like it or not, at the opportunity of selling out.
                Many big firms from Europe will be circling the waters of Romania next year, hoping to take on the best performing private companies.
                Playing on local businesses' fears of the influx of competition during EU-accession, these acquirers could buy up a firm at a pretty price - even though, out there in Romania, there are just as many bargains as basket-cases.




National Day - Czech Republic

National Day - Japan

Time of their life

Czeching it out

Just parts and not the whole

This year is a time of celebration for many companies who have stayed the course in Romania with five, ten, fifteen and even over one hundred years of local activity. The Diplomat interviews a selection of those with a birthday.

Small but dynamic, the Czech Republic has become one of the most active members of new Europe on the local market, as Anca Pol tracks the nation's move from trade partner to investor.
One of the most successful post-1989 nations and a popular tourist magnet, the Czech Republic is seen in the west and east as a blueprint of how a former communist country can create a dynamic market economy and a fair social system at the same time.

Japan has begun to move some manufacturing to Romania but the big brands are still keeping out.
Romania is seeing growing interest from Japan in the vehicle parts sector, but the eastern nation is still holding back from using its European partner as a base for large scale manufacture in cars or electronics.




Serious contender

Majority of country opposes military presence abroad

Breaking the silence

This Government is now serious about development, says Owaise Saadat, country manager of the poverty-busting World Bank Romania.
Confidence. This is what the World Bank now seems to have in the Romanian political system. Last month the non-profit financial organisation launched its Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) with Romania, a process where the local Government takes a more active role in choosing projects for World Bank cash.
Most Romanians do not favour their country's troop presence in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia and Kosovo, says a new report, which shows that the country is not as gung-ho in its attitude towards a militaristic foreign policy as many have believed.
            Three fifths of Romanians believe the presence of the American military bases will see an increased danger of a terrorist attack against Romania, according to the Institute for Public Policies (IPP) report.
During the Second World War thousands of Romanian Rroma died in the now Republic of Moldova in a holocaust that is only now gaining state recognition. Anca Pol talks to its survivors.
“Hitler and Antonescu took us away from our village in Teleorman county with nothing else but the clothes we wore,” Rroma Holocaust survivor Dumitru Tranca tells The Diplomat.
Tranca was 12 years old when he and his family were among tens of thousands deported by the pro-Fascist Antonescu regime between 1942 and 1944.