World Bank president: Romanians' income up to half European
The Romanians' income has, over the last 20 years, increased from a fourth of the European average income to nearly half the European average income as the markets have opened and the institutions have reformed, visiting World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said at the end of a meeting with Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta on Thursday.
It's true we offer counseling to several countries, several governments, but also important is the experience we gain by doing this thing. One must underscore the political and economic progress of Romania over the last 20 years, Kim stressed. It has been an impressive progress and Romania deserves to be paid the well-deserved attention for the progress it has made. Also, Romania has made enormous progress for the growth of its economy and the good news is that the Romanians' income has increased from a fourth of the European average income to nearly half the European average income as the markets have opened and the institutions have reformed. The even better news is that the poorest population's income has gone up at a much faster pace than we've seen in other countries from across the world, where we also collaborate, he added.
Kim remarked that a meeting of the World Bank's Board of Directors took place in Washington last month and one of the very important targets set on that occasion is uprooting the global poverty by 2030.
One of these is to end global poverty by 2030 and the second is to share the prosperity worldwide, the World Bank chief said. Romania has proved to be an example in this respect. Together with the European Commission and the International Monetary Fund, we are glad to have been able to help to the progress of Romania, to the macroeconomic stabilisation of Romania by means of our financial and technical assistance. In Romania, the budget deficit dropped from 7.3 percent in 2009 to 2.5 percent in 2012 and also the public debt of Romania as a percentage of the GDP is of 35 percent, we must compare such debt to the European average of 83 percent. In the last years, the growth in Romania has been positive, the inflation begins to get close to the Central Bank's target. Romania has made progress for the stabilisation of the economy, said the international lending institution's president, who is paying a visit to Romania on Thursday and Friday, his first after taking up post in last July.
Romania needs to continue to have flexible labor markets, that will facilitate the transition from jobs with low productivity to some with high productivity and that will lead to increase labor force qualification, said President of the Bank World Jim Yong Kim, at the end of the meeting with Prime Minister Victor Ponta, at the Victoria Palace.
'The Government, currently, focuses on developing a new agenda for growth. Specifically, this will mean building a more competitive economy, with a faster and more inclusive growth, an economy that shares its prosperity with all the people of Romania. We believe that realization of this vision will require deeper structural reforms in many sectors of the economy and public administration. We also believe that the Government will have to stay on the route taken in the direction of fiscal consolidation, which will require a firm resolve to build on the achievements obtained so far. To ensure that this growth continues to benefit the poor, we consider that Romania should further have flexible labor markets that will facilitate the transition from jobs with low productivity to some with high productivity and will also lead to increase labor force qualification ', Jim Yong Kim explained on Thursday.
According to him, setting up a simpler business environment will allow entrepreneurs to create jobs and bring added value to the economy. There will be, however, necessary to have an adequate social protection for the most vulnerable.
'The level of poverty is a constant concern of the Prime Minister of Romania and also this thing is known to all Romanian citizens. Tomorrow we will meet with some representatives of Roma community. The situation of this ethnic group interests us', the President of World Bank stressed.
He also pointed out that, despite progress made by the Government, Romania remains the country with the highest levels of poverty in the European Union.
'Over 30 percent of the population lives with less than 5 dollars per day. I would like to draw attention upon the people living on an income so small, including the Roma population here, in Romania and in other parts of Europe. I consider it is a moral imperative for all the governments to establish social insurance systems for the poorest and to invest in education and health care for those who are most needy. There is a humanitarian argument for doing so, but there is also an economic one. If the most needy can be taken out of poverty, this would represent a success for all of us - more workforce, attraction as a consequence of investments, which leads to job creation. And, if Romania continues to educate the poorer, offers them opportunities to get professional training and quality health care services, it would become a real model for the whole world ', the World Bank official also said. (source: actmedia.eu)