Progress Report on the Priorities of the European Commission, November 23 - 29, 2017.pdf
Amid heated debates in the Special Parliamentary Committee for Justice (Chair Florin Iordache) over the Justice Laws, the two Chambers took a blow this week, with the release on November 27 of a press statement by the US Department of State, in which they expressed their "concern that the Parliament of Romania is considering legislation that could undermine the fight against corruption and weaken judicial independence in Romania." Further on, the statement signed by Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert urged the Romanian Parliament to "reject proposals that weaken the rule of law and endanger the fight against corruption."


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Weekly Policy and Political Report November 20 - 27, 2017
Speculations about a Government reshuffle and the most likely ministers to be ousted from the Government made headlines just days after the Government led by PM Mihai Tudose survived the no confidence vote initiated by the National Liberal Party. PSD Executive Chairman Nicolae Bădălău (PSD's number two) announced that PSD Deputy Elena Dinu is most likely going to replace Minister of Health Florian Bodog in February, or earlier. Bădălău made the announcement in Giurghiu, his colleagues' hometown. PM Tudose denied speculations over a reshuffle, adding that he is going to evaluate his cabinet in January. Minister of Labor Lia Olguța Vasilescu labeled rumors about Government reshuffle 'a bad joke'. Bădălau also denied rumors, and provided the larger context of his statement, highlighting that he only agreed that his colleague is suitable for the position of Minister of Health and nothing more. 


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Progress Report on Fiscal Policies November 21 - 27, 2017
The Committee for Budget (Senate, Chair Eugen Orlando Teodorovici) debates the report for the Draft Bill approving Government Emergency Ordinance 79/2017 (CAS & CASS Transfer) on Wednesday, November 29. Last Wednesday, (November 22) during the weekly sitting of Senate's Committee for Budget, Senators held general debates and presented amendments to GEO 79/2017 without casting any vote. After the sitting held on November 22, Committee Chair Teodorovici advised the Government to issue another GEO amending this one as it has already gathered a significant number of amendments in Parliament. Teodorovici argued in favor of allowing SMEs to opt between turnover and profit tax, in light of the new EUR 1 million turnover ceiling under which companies are levied 1% turnover tax instead of 16% profit tax. During the same meeting, PNL Senator Florian Câțu argued that these fiscal changes pave the road for "chaos" starting with January 2018, and that they have a weakening effect on foreign investments.


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Progress Report on the Priorities of the European Commission November 15 - 22, 2017
The no-confidence vote initiated by the National Liberal Party and signed by USR and PMP was read in the joint plenum on Monday, November 20. The next day, the Standing Bureau scheduled the vote for Thursday, despite PNL's proposal to hold the vote the following week. The motion directly targeted Liviu Dragnea and PM Tudose for the lack of investments, as well as proposed fiscal and judicial reforms. There are slim chances that the motion passes, as neither national minorities, nor UDMR offered their support. The motion has raised a number of 148 signatures, insufficient for toppling the Government. The motion is to be voted in the Parliament’s plenary sitting on Thursday, starting 11:00.


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Weekly Policy and Political Report November 13 – 20, 2017
The no-confidence vote initiated by the National Liberal Party and signed by USR and PMP was read in the joint plenum on Monday, November 20. The motion directly targeted Liviu Dragnea and PM Tudose for the lack of investments, proposed fiscal and judicial reforms. There are slim chances that the motion passes, as neither national minorities, nor UDMR offered their support. The motion has raised a number of 148 signatures, insufficient for toppling the Government. At the end of the sitting, Chamber of Deputies Secretary Ioana Bran could not provide a date for the vote on the motion.


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