After the two-week mission of IMF to Romania, the talks handled by Romanian authorities and IMF, European Commission and other multilateral institutions resulted on March 25 in a rescue package of nearly 20 bln euros, made up of 12.95 bln from International Monetary Fund, 5 bn euros from European Commission, 1.2-1.5 bn euros from World Bank and 1 bn euros from other financial institutions. What are strings attached to this arrangement?
3.5% yearly interest to IMF loan

The interest Romania is bound to pay for the IMF loan will be approximately 3.5% per year, in line with the current market conditions, said the head of IMF mission to Romania, Jeffrey Franks.

“The margin that IMF applies to the interest depends on the amount borrowed by each state. In case of Romania, the interest will probably be around 3.5% per year, pretty modest if we look at the current market conditions,” said Jeffrey Franks.

IMF representative for Romania and Bulgaria, Juan Ansola, said the two-year loan will be reimbursed until 2015 the latest.

“The restitution of the loan will be made over 3-5 years, until 2015” Ansola said.

Wage system should not rely on bonuses

One of the requirements imposed by IMF to Romania is a more transparent wage system not based on bonuses, but on a streamlined remuneration scheme, said Jeffrey Franks.

He added that doubling of the wage budget spending could not be maintained in Romania. “This doesn’t mean the wages would decrease, but the system would be simplified and more transparent”, said the official, explaining that it is not fair for an officer to be paid differently according to the institution he works for.

“The reform of the wage system is aimed to correct these disparities. It is a wage system that will not rely on bonuses but on a basic paycheck”, said the IMF official.

Jeffrey Franks said the IMF agreement also provides specific conditions designed to “protect and increase support of the most vulnerable sector of the society. “There are various measures in the agreement meant to raise funds for social aid and for assuring a solid pension scheme and minimum wages”.

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