Romania, China willing to strengthen bilateral ties
Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila also held a meeting with Zhang on Monday.
During the meetings, Zhang said that the relations between China and Romania are marked by profound friendship and both sides care for each other’s core interests and major concerns.
China is willing to work together with Romania to firmly grasp the important occasions like the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries and the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the comprehensive partnership of friendship.
As well as cooperation, maintain the momentum of bilateral high-level exchanges, strengthen strategic links, policy communication and push for more pragmatic cooperation, according to Zhang.
The Romanian leaders stated that developing relations with China is one of their country’s diplomatic priorities.
Romania supports and actively participates in the Belt and Road construction and China-Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC) cooperation, and is willing to play an active role in the European Union (EU) to promote the healthy development of Romania-China relations, as well as EU-China ties.
Romania further relaxes COVID-19 restrictions
People walk past reopened terraces of restaurants in Bucharest, Romania, on June 1, 2020. Romania adopted new relaxation measures from June 1, including reopening open-air terraces of restaurants and beaches, lifting the travel restrictions for residents, as well as allowing outdoor shows and sports events. (Photo by Cristian Cristel/Xinhua)
Romania to allow outdoor sports events from June 1
Romanian Prime Minister Ludovic Orban announced late Thursday a series of relaxation measures from June 1, including allowing outdoor sports events without spectators.
According to a governmental decision signed by the prime minister, the relaxation measures related to sports include allowing sports competitions to be held in the open air and professional water athletes to compete even in indoor pools.
However, the above relaxation measures are not applicable to sports games with physical contact. In addition, all the competitions are to run without audience and epidemic prevention requirements must be observed.
According to the decision, indoor training for professional athletes must ensure a space of seven square meters per person.
Romania entered in the state of alert on May 15, after the end of a two-month higher-level state of emergency. According to the first phase of relaxation measures implemented at the time, professional athletes can resume training in fully enclosed camps, with a medical certificate confirming a negative test for COVID-19.
Romania’s national and Olympic teams had to stop their centralized preparations in mid-March when the Ministry of Youth and Sports ordered to suspend all sports training and competitions amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Romania reported its first COVID-19 case on Feb. 26. The epidemic in the country is still at the plateau, with 197 new cases confirmed in the latest 24 hours.
Romania to take new relaxation measures from June 1: minister
Romanian Health Minister Nelu Tataru announced on Tuesday that new relaxation measures will be taken as of June 1.
According to the official, the authorities will assess the first period of 14 days of relaxation after the end of the state of emergency and then announce the new relaxation measures.
“For now we can say with a quite high degree of certainty that we will reopen terraces(of restaurants)… We’ll keep the same social distance,” Tataru told local broadcaster B1TV, quoted by the official Agerpres news agency.
“There may be other measures too, but we’ll proceed to the assessment at the end of this week,” he added.
According to the minister, beaches could reopen from June 15 and from July or August, the Romanians could lead “a quasi-normal life.”
As the first batch of relaxation measures after the end of the state of emergency, residents are allowed to travel locally, but mask-wearing is mandatory in enclosed public spaces and on public transport. Meanwhile, parks reopened, while shops with access directly to the street, barbers, beauty salons, dentists and museums resumed business.
Romania reported its first COVID-19 case on Feb. 26, which involved a 20-year-old Romanian national infected by an Italian visitor. The country announced 146 new confirmed cases on Tuesday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 18,429, with 1,216 fatalities.
UEFA gives Romania another week to submit restart plan
UEFA last month gave European leagues an initial May 25 deadline to submit plans but the FRF requested an extension after the Romanian government said it was assessing the COVID-19 situation every two weeks.
The federation added that the extension would allow them to analyse how current medical protocols would impact team training, etc.
The FRF hoped to resume the domestic top flight on June 13 but the decision needed government approval.
The FRF suspended all football competitions in the country in mid-March.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Salif Atojoko (NAN)
Romanian police seize 50 kg of heroin in tractor-trailer
Romanian police intercepted 50 kilograms of heroin in the cabin of a tractor-trailer driven by a Bulgarian citizen, at a border crossing point in the south, according to a statement released on Monday by the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT).
The border police discovered the drug on Sunday, at the Calafat Border Crossing Point, Dolj County, on the north bank of the Danube River. When conducting a routine inspection, the police found in a travel bag hidden among luggage and food bags, several packages containing approximately 50 kg of heroin.
The market value of this batch of heroin is estimated at 1.5 million euros (1.6 million U.S. dollars), according to DIICOT.
The Bulgarian citizen, 38, was detained and then submitted on Monday to the Bucharest Tribunal, with a proposal for preventive arrest for a period of 30 days.
The driver claimed that the travel bag belonged to a friend of his, who had asked him to take it to Switzerland.
Due to its geographical location, Romania forms part of the Balkan route for drug smuggling.
Romania to provide 1 bln euros to companies affected by COVID-19
According to the Ministry of Economy, Energy and the Business Environment, the funds would enter its budget from the Ministry of European Funds and will be distributed among companies in the hardest-hit areas.
Some 350 million euros could go to HoReCa (hotels, restaurants and cafes) and transport companies, about 100 million euros could be given as an aid in the form of vouchers for companies without employees (where the employer is the only employee), while the remaining 550 million euros could go to companies that want to speed up production, the ministry announced on its Facebook page.
“We think that in this program we will offer up to 800,000 euros non-reimbursable per beneficiary, money that can go to medium and small companies in industry and trade,” Liviu Rogojinaru, state secretary of the ministry, was quoted as saying, referring to the remaining 550 million euros.
This is another measure taken by the authorities to support enterprises during the pandemic. Late March, the government announced to suspend the payment of rates as a first major measure to mitigate the economic impact of the pandemic on households and companies. (1 euro = 1.09 U.S. dollars)
People enjoy sunshine day in Bucharest, Romania
People roller-skate on a road in Bucharest, Romania, May 23, 2020. Romania is now in state of alert regarding COVID-19 pandemic, a level lower than the state of emergency. Under the state of alert, residents are allowed to travel locally, but mask-wearing is mandatory in enclosed public spaces and on public transport. (Photo by Cristian Cristel/Xinhua)
Hungary reopens border with Romania
Hungary reopened all of its border crossings with Romania and will start talks to reopen its borders with Slovenia, official sources informed here on Thursday.
“On May 21, 2020, from 06:00 a.m. Hungarian time, all Hungarian-Romanian border crossing points operated before the emergency will reopen,” the Hungarian national police announced on its official website.
“Transit opportunities have been expanded for Romanian citizens transported by cars, buses and mini-buses, who travel by plane from Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport, or their aircraft arrives in Hungary and they travel home by car,” the police said in a statement.
Drivers and their passengers arriving for the above purpose shall be exempt from official home-quarantine upon entry. During their trip, they can stop at the designated refueling stations and rest areas in Hungary only when absolutely necessary, according to the statement.
Hungary also aims at reopening its borders with neighboring Slovenia, as negotiations on the opening of the Hungarian-Slovenian borders will begin shortly, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto announced on his Facebook page on Thursday.
The minister said that Hungary was interested in a reasonable easing of the restrictions at the borders, and the Slovenian and Hungarian police chiefs would start negotiations on the details of the border opening.
Experts decode genetic map of SARS-CoV-2 virus in Romania
Romanian experts managed to decode the genetic map of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in their country, which is closer to those identified in different countries in Europe, India and the United States, the state television station TVR reported on Wednesday.
The virus in Romania is 99.95 percent identical to the reference strain in Wuhan of China, and in an even higher proportion, namely 99.96-99.97 percent, identical with strains identified in Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Britain, Spain and the United States, according to the genetic map decoded by renowned biologist Mihaela Lazar and her team from the Cantacuzino Institute in Bucharest.
The genetic map is crucial for understanding the peculiarities of this virus, for making a guide to future and possible treatments and for assessing the impact of medical interventions with a role in improving health, the Romanian biologist was quoted as saying.
The data has already been transmitted to the World Health Organization and will be used by scientists around the world, the Cantacuzino Institute stated.
The Cantacuzino Institute, a subordinate to the Ministry of Defense, has been the National Reference Center for Influenza since 1969. It collaborates with all medical institutions across the country and transmits to WHO important information for public health.
Romania reported its first COVID-19 case on Feb. 26, which involved a 20-year-old Romanian national infected by an Italian visitor. The country announced 196 new confirmed cases on Wednesday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 17,387, with 1,147 fatalities.
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