Tariceanu: Real estate boom signals future economic growth
The real estate boom is a growing evidence of foreign investors' interest in the Romanian market, so that it is economic growth and not stagnation that we should be expecting to witness in the following years, says Romanian premier Calin Popescu-Tariceanu.
"The value of direct real estate investments is showing us things are going well. The trend of prices on the real estate market is one proof of interest in the Romanian market, which can only lead to economic growth," the Romanian prime minister told ZIARUL FINANCIAR.
Another proof of foreign investors' interest in the Romanian market is Ford's arrival in Romania. Tariceanu says he is entirely confident that Ford is going to take over Daewoo. "I get reports 2-3 times a day on the progress of negotiations. I am positive (the deal will be sealed i.e.)".
On the other hand, the premier says CEC (Romanian Savings Bank) is doing better and better after the 150m-euro injection the state has made in the institution at the end of last year. "CEC privatisation is progressing according to schedule. After the capital increase, its performance has started improving. Our intention is to turn CEC into a powerful bank. We'll see what to do afterwards, either raise private capital, or keep it, we'll see about that."
According to the premier, CEC was not sold because conditions were not favourable at that moment. "We were expecting one thing, we got a completely different thing, too little considering the value of the bank. I do not need a CEC that should be taken over by a private entity. What I need is a bank that should have networks in rural areas, that should serve less accessible regions. Had we thought only from the perspective of the money that was to enter the budget, maybe we'd have sold CEC, but this is not the way we thought things out. I am confident CEC is going to develop in the future".
The Romanian prime minister says CEC did not take over ASIBAN, the insurance company in which it holds a 25 percent stake, because the spent money would have diminished the value of the bank. On the other hand, Tariceanu avoided adopting a clear position with regard to the privatisation of Rompetrol.
Asked whether in the case of Petrom the state could regain ownership should OMV not fulfil its obligations as stipulated in the privatisation contract, as the economy minister Varujan Vosganian suggested several days ago, Tariceanu answered, "Some very big mistakes were made with regard to privatisation processes in the energy field, but in the following days we will enact an energy strategy that will bring the necessary corrections". The prime minister chose not to offer further details in this regard.