Thursday, January 7

High level meeting at Cotroceni Palace

The Cotroceni Presidential Palace in Romania’s capital Bucharest is the host of a high level meeting on Thursday between Romanian President Klaus Iohannis and Prime Minister Florin Cîțu, his deputy, Dan Barna, and other government ministers. Participants in the meeting will also include Transport Minister Cătălin Drulă, Economy Minister Claudiu Năsui, Justice Minister Cătălin Predoiu, Health Minister Vlad Voiculescu, and Ciprian Teleman, Minister for Research, Innovation and Digitisation. The event occurs at a time when the government is expected to put forward the 2021 budget which will go to parliament for debate in early February. The European Commission said it expected Romania’s economy to contract by 5.2 percent this year, improving its July estimate of a 6 percent decrease of the countrys GDP. In 2021, Romania’s economy is expected to rebound to 3.3 percent growth, the Commission said in its Autumn 2020 Economic Forecast Report.

St John the Baptist Day in Romania

Romanian Christian Orthodox believers celebrate St John the Baptist’s Day on January 7. There are up to 2 million Romanians who celebrate their name day on January 7 as the name of John and its derivatives are some of, if not the most popular given names in a country where more than 85 percent of its population is Christian Orthodox. The Nativity of John the Baptist is a high-ranking liturgical feast celebrated in Roman Catholic, Anglican, Eastern Ortodox and Lutheran churches.

Romania coronavirus updates

Romania reported 4,951 new coronavirus cases on Thursday with 111 deaths (80 men, 31 women) and 1,106 people under intensive care. In the capital Bucharest, the number of new Covid-19 cases hit 940, according to data issued by the country’s Strategic Communication Group (GCS). The Romanian capital is followed by the Transylvanian county of Cluj with 404 new cases (after 229 on Wednesday),  the western county of Timiș with 340 cases, and the north-eastern county of Iassy (230 cases).Fewest number of cases was reported in Romaania’s central county of Harghita.

Alexandru Danga, R