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AIMS HUMANAIMS CAPITAL ROMANIA HUMAN CAPITAL 2011 ROMANIA

OVERVIEW ON THE ROMANIAN BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT March 2011

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1. ROMANIA – GENERAL BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT……………………………………………………….. 4 Information about the general business environment in Romania. The development of the Romanian economy after 2000. The most important direct foreign investments in Romania. Taxation and legal frame. The Romanian economy after integration in the EU. Migration process of Romanian workforce in EU countries. Major risks for business development in the future: weak infrastructure, corruption, bureaucracy. 2. THE IMPACT OF THE GLOBAL ECONOMIC DOWNTURN ON THE LABOR MARKET….........7 Labor market trends before 2008. The impact of the economic downturn upon Romanian economy: GDP, budget deficit, rising unemployment. 2010, a difficult year for local companies. Cost cutting measures taken by the Romanian Government. Taxes and legal frame after the VAT increase. The new Labor Code. 3. EDUCATION IN ROMANIA……………………………………..…………………………………………………..11 A general overview of the local education system. Higher education in Romania. Major University Centers. Competiveness of the Romanian Educational System. 4. POST-GRADUATE EDUCATION IN ROMANIA ……………..……………….……………………………….15 MBA and MA programs available in Romania. 5. FOREIGN LANGUAGE SKILLS IN ROMANIA………………………………………………………………….17 Foreign language skills by percentage. National minorities in Romania. Difference between urban and rural areas. Foreign language skills in different geographical areas of Romania. 6. KEY ROMANIAN LABOUR CODE INFORMATION………………………….................................18 Individual labor contract. Collective labor agreement. Increased flexibility of the Romanian legal frame concerning labor relations. Health and safety regulations. Salary negotiation process. Most common benefits and compensations. The salary structure. Taxes paid by the employer.

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7. INSIGHT INTO ROMANIAN WORK MENTALITIES…………………………….............................25 An analysis of work mentalities evolution in Romania. The most relevant aspects that, in time, have become “specific” to Romanians. Romanian leadership inventory. Core values and personal beliefs. The productivity of Romanian employees. 8. ROMANIAN MEDIA AND HUMAN CAPITAL RECRUITMENT ……….……….........................28 The most important Romanian newspapers and magazines. The benefits of advertisements in various media. Alternatives to traditional recruitment practices (web recruitment, social networks). 9. BRIEF SALARY AND BENEFITS INFORMATION FOR KEY POSITIONS …............................31 General guidelines that need to be considered when recruiting for middle and top management positions (General Manager, Finance Manager, Marketing Manager, Sales Manager etc.). Most valuable competencies, motivational patterns and last, but not least, typical packages. 10. PERSPECTIVES ON THE ROMANIAN ECONOMY………………………………………………………….41 The end of the economical downturn in 2011. Growth of exports. Main economical strengths and weaknesses. Romania and the Schengen area. Future perspectives on Romanian currency 11. BIBLIOGRAPHY…………………………………………………..……………………………………………………..43

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1. ROMANIA – GENERAL BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT After a long and painful transition from centralized economy to capitalism, Romania is one of the emerging markets from Central and Eastern Europe. With a population over 22 million inhabitants and a GDP of 251.741 billion USD in 2009, the 11th largest in the European Union by total nominal GDP and the 8th largest based on purchasing power parity, Romania stands beside Poland, Hungary and Czech Republic among the most important economies in Eastern Europe. The recent evolution of the Romanian economy took the same path as other countries in the region; Romania began the transition from communism to a free market economy in 1989. The country’s industrial base was largely obsolete and the output was unsuited to the nation’s needs. After years of deep recession, Romania emerged as a stronger country in 2000, aided by a strong demand in the EU export markets. With the main objective of the foreign policy being the integration in NATO and the European Union, Romania received the support and assistance of International Institutions and Organizations. Financial and technical assistance continued to flow in from the U.S., the European Union, other industrial nations, and international financial institutions facilitating Romania's reintegration into the world economy. The International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (IBRD), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), all had programs and resident representatives in Romania. One of the most important targets of the monetary policy at the beginning of 2000 was to fight against high inflation and provide a balanced currency. In 2005 Romania underwent a currency reform, switching from the previous Leu (ROL) to a new Leu (RON). 1 RON equals 10,000 ROL. Since 2004, the annual inflation has been under 10% (8,60% in 2006, 6,57% in 2007, 6,30% in 2008 and 4,37 in 2009) in comparison with 15% in 2003. The currency exchange rate remained stable over the following years (3,5 – 4 RON/EUR on average). Romania’s investment attractiveness was fueled by the enforcement of the single tax rate (16%) in 2004, the constant low cost of local labor (after Albania, Bulgaria and some countries in former Yugoslavia, Romanian average labor cost is still the lowest among European countries), and by successful privatization of most important state-owned companies. Until the end of 2005, the Romanian Government had privatized most economy sectors. The largest privatization deals concluded are: BCR (sold to Erste Bank in 2005), Petrom (sold to OMV in 2004), The Agricultural Bank (sold to Raiffeisen Bank in 2001), Sidex (sold to LNM Ispat in 2000), BRD (sold to Société Générale in 1998), and Dacia (sold to Renault in 1997).

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The privatization of the largest Romanian bank, BCR, finalized at the end of 2005, is by far the largest ever done in Romania. The amount obtained by the Romanian state, approximately 3.75 billion EUR for 61.88% of shares, is so large, that it is about equal to the value of all other privatizations of the last 15 years. Another successful major privatization was done also with an Austrian investor – Petrom, the national oil company. The deal was concluded in 2004, when OMV acquired 33% of the company, for about 700 million EUR. Petrom is now the largest company in Romania, with a turnover of about 2,5 billion EUR. Romania has experienced growth in foreign investment with a cumulative FDI totaling more than 90 billion EUR since 1989 until 2010; over 90% of this figure was made after 2004. Among the most important foreign investors in Romania are EU countries. The first place is held by Austria (Erste Bank, OMV, Strabag, Raiffeisen Bank, Vienna Insurance Group, Billa) followed by the Netherlands (Unilever, ING Bank, Heineken, Friesland, KPMG), Germany (Continental Automotive, Bosch, Siemens AG, Hella Electronics, Metro, Lidl & Schwarz, E.ON), France (Renault, Societe Generale, Alcatel, Michelin, Valeo) and Italy (ENEL, Pirelli, Unicredit, Natuzzi, Zoppas Industries). Last but not least, when talking about major investors, one should also mention American investments (Ford, Smithfield, Citibank, Procter & Gamble, Coca Cola, IBM, Delphi Packard and Emerson). However, most foreign investments came from Europe – over 75% of the total. Besides multinational players, a new generation of local businesses starts to emerge: RCS-RDS (telecommunication), Scandia, Argus, Transavia (food industry), Dedeman (DYI Retail), UTI Systems (IT), Interbrands (FMCG Distribution), Transilvania Bank (Financial Services), Edy Spedition (transport), Rompetrol (oil & gas). The newly-acquired EU membership status in 2007 provides a boost in economic development, but also in the commitment of the Romanian political establishment to adopt important reforms in major areas, such as public administration, finance, security and legal system. Among the most significant effects of this process were the new ability to attract large investments – such as Nokia and Ford, but also the increasing mobility and migration of Romanian workforce to EU countries. Right now, it is estimated that over 2,2 million Romanian citizens (over 20% of the active population) are working and living in the Schengen area – especially in countries such as Italy and Spain. Between 2003 and 2009, Romanian economic growth was among the fastest in Europe (officially 8.4% in 2008 and more than three times the EU average), and has been referred to as a "Tiger" due to its high growth rates and rapid development. During that time, the unemployment rate fell from 9,5% to less than 4%. Among the sectors with the highest development rates were: the automotive industry, research and development,

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real estate, banking & financial services and retail. However, there is still a major unexploited potential in agriculture, tourism and energy. This newly-found wealth has improved the standard of living for a significant part of the population. Romania has growing middle and upper classes with relatively high per capita incomes. World Bank estimated that in 2002 99% of the urban and 94% of the rural population had access to electricity. In 2004, 91% of the urban and only 16% of the rural population had access to improved water supply and 94% of the urban population had access to improved sanitation. In 2007 there were about 19.5 million mobile phone users in Romania and about 7 million internet users. Besides exports, domestic consumption and investment also fueled the country’s GDP growth in recent years, but led also to huge current account imbalances. The country saw a rise in inflation in 2007-2008, driven by consumer demand and impressive wage growth, rising energy costs, high food prices and relaxation of fiscal discipline. Inflation abated again in 2009, as Romania's GDP growth contracted due to the global recession. The Romanian economic development is, however, unequal and there are still huge gaps between different regions. In general, the Capital and its surrounding county Ilfov are described as better developed, followed by Transylvania and Banat (the Western part of Transylvania along the Hungarian-Serbian border). The North-East of the country especially and its SouthWest are considered the least developed. The economic development of Romania is asymmetrically driven by FDI-flows, which follow the main traffic roads. The Southern and Eastern parts were always more rural, while handicraft-oriented trades are characteristic for the Central and Western parts. The economic profile of the early 21th century Romania is still influenced by the historical and cultural main provinces: Transylvania, traditionally better developed and focused on manufacturing and extraction of raw materials, both Muntenia and Moldova focused on agriculture and trade, but also featuring some industrialized cities and on the other hand, Oltenia and Dobrudja, more dependent on agriculture, light industry and tourism. However, in nowadays Romania there are some major issues that have not been solved yet, the lack of a modern transport infrastructure being one of them. The Romanian GDP more than doubled in the last 6 years, economists estimate, but the nation could develop even faster if travel and transport were easier. With more than 22 million people living in a territory the size of UK, Romania has less than 120 miles of high-speed highway, by some estimates. Romania's infrastructure is fairly extensive, with 103,671 kilometers (64,276 miles) of road, 11,385 kilometers (7,058 miles) of rail, and 3.84 million main telephone lines. But most of it is in 6


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a poor state of repair, due to decades of underinvestment. This is a situation that successive governments are eager to rectify, though they have had difficulty finding the necessary funding. Most hopes rest on foreign aid, particularly from the EU, and on attracting foreign investment. The country has 12 international airports, but most of them are small and needing urgent upgrading. Another reason for discontent is the failure of the public authorities to effectively fight against the current level of bureaucracy and corruption. After the collapse of communism, bureaucracy and corruption have dramatically increased in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Since both of them are "symptoms of fundamental institutional weakness", their extent may be attributed to the specificity of the process of institutional change in a transition economy. In 2008, Romania was once again rated by Transparency International among the most corrupt nations in the EU – 27, with a Corruption Perception Index (CPI) score of 3,8, meaning that the country has a serious corruption problem. According to a Euro-Barometer from April 2008, 75% of the Romanian respondents consider corruption a major problem in their country (European Commission, 2008). At the same time, the Governance Indicators released last year by the World Bank point out that Romania scores last among EU members, equal to Trinidad Tobago when it comes to Control of Corruption and to Guyana if we take into consideration the score for Government Effectiveness (Kaufmann et al., 2008). The Romanian bureaucratic system is still driving away not only Romanian entrepreneurs, but also many foreign investors and EU funding opportunities. According to Romania's President Traian Basescu, from a total of 9 billion EUR funded by the EU, a total of 5,5 billion has not been used, covering the years 2007, 2008 and 2009 (according to Romania News Watch, 13 March, 2009).

2. THE IMPACT OF THE GLOBAL ECONOMIC DOWNTURN ON THE LABOR MARKET High economic growth and a vast labor exodus to Western Europe have created a labor shortage in many sectors of Romania's economy. As a result, growing wage pressures have a negative impact on foreign direct investments, threatening the country's economic long-term growth. Businesses in some sectors have difficulties in finding skilled workers, while facing rising labor costs. As another side effect, mounting wages and remittances from abroad have led to rising consumer demand and inflation. After 7 years of GDP increases, 2008 was the best year for Romanian employees. The unemployment rate fell under 4% on average (under 1% in 7


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Bucharest and under 2% in the Western part of Romania) and the average salary rose to a monthly 456 EUR/GROSS in 2008 (from 100 EUR GROSS/month in 2001). Between 2006 and 2008 Romanians witnessed one of the biggest and most rapid salary increases in Eastern Europe – with an average of 15% up to 18% per year. In Romania, as many as 73% of employers say they have difficulties in filling available positions, compared to 12% in the UK, 18% in Italy, 26% in Belgium, 31% in France, 34% in Germany, 47% in Greece and 49% in Poland. For other continents the figures range from 12% in India to 22% for the USA, or 28% for Mexico and 38% for South Africa. HR specialists describe the labor market in 2008 as an Employee Market. First time acknowledged in Romania in the summer of 2008, the global economic downturn hit Romania hard, as well as the other countries from emerging markets. With capital inflows to the CEE economies slowing to a trickle in Eastern Europe, a sharp correction was underway in most countries' external imbalances and in particular in their current-account deficits. For the CEE-6 (Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey), net private capital flows started to slow down in the early part of 2009 and 2010. In Romania, for instance, the FDI volume started to drop dramatically from the record of 9 billion EUR in 2008 to 4,8 billion in 2009 and 3 billion EUR in 2010, and the value of the Romanian stock market fell with over 70% in a couple of months. At the same time, less money came in from Romanians working abroad. Around 1 billion EUR (1.187 billion US$) of remittances entered Romania for the first two months of the year, compared with 1.49 billion EUR (2.02 billion US$) in the same period in 2009. Due to the lesser demand for exports of goods and services (the main foreign trade partners of Romania are mainly other EU countries such as Germany, Italy, Spain) and a shortage of financial support for the banking system, the main industries started the cost -cutting process: the unemployment rate increase dramatically from 4,8% in 2008 to a record of 8% in 2010, mainly in the private sector. After 7 years of growth, the country GDP dropped with 7,1% in 2009, a European record (after Ukraine, Greece and Baltic countries – Romania had the biggest GDP fall in Europe), leaving the government with a public budget deficit over 6%. To avoid the default risk, the Romanian Government and the Romanian National Bank decided to ask for IMF assistance. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other lenders have agreed to provide Romania 20bn EUR (£18.4bn; $27bn) in aid in the spring of 2009. As in most countries, the construction, real estate and trade sectors were drastically affected. The construction field plummeted from a positive 30% increase at the peak level to a 16-17% compared to prior quarters. For instance, retail fell with over 9%, the banking system with 15%, the automotive sales with over 30% and real estate business with 50% in 2009. The 8


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National Institute of Statistics, that regularly publishes the figures presented in the graph below, collects more and more figures in the effort to prepare a more complex and up-to-date radiography of the Romanian economy. With all these figures, it is clear that most of the economic sectors were simply trying to survive. Heavily dependent on loans and investments, the major Romanian companies were harshly put to trial in 2010. Last year was the bankruptcy year, especially for retail companies such as Leonardo, Trident or PIC, but also some real estate developers and manufacturing companies. On the other hand, the banking system has remained intact without any financial aid from the Central Bank. As a direct effect of lesser foreign currency in the country, there was additional pressure on the national currency, that devalued with almost 15% in a couple of weeks (from 3,81 Lei/EUR in October 2008 to 4,28 Lei/EUR in January 2009). As part of a reform package, IMF officials discussed about tax reform and cost cutting. The measures included a VAT growth from 19% to 24%, other excises increasing (for gasoline, tobacco, luxury goods), with a regressive impact on growth and social equality, and potential future raises of other taxes. With unemployment rate at about 8 % and inflation running way ahead of earnings growth, the Finance Minister was under pressure from employee representatives to abandon the flat tax and restore progressive income taxes. After a very difficult year in 2009, the Romanian authorities were forced to take other drastic measures in 2010. In the summer of 2010 the Romanian Government announced a salary cut of 25% for all public sector employees and important reforms in the public pension system. This strategy led to a wave of public protests and heated the political debates on current government policies and middle-term strategy. The cutting cost policies aimed at balancing the public deficit, but the side effects of this approach (lesser governmental investments, increasing inflation, decrease of internal consumption) brought another year of recession. It was estimated that the Romanian GDP dropped with 1,2% in 2010 and the recovery process would start in the second semester of 2011. Due to the devaluation of the national currency, cost cutting in the public sector, rising unemployment levels in the private sector and tax increases, the income and standard of living for over 90% of the Romanian active population declined in 2009 and 2010. In terms of human capital, this means that the labor market of 2011 became an Employers’ market. The national average salary decreased with 12% to the amount of 411 EUR/gross/month. In the spring of 2010 a report of the National Institute of Statistics presented the average income for different areas of the economy, which can be found below:

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AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA February 2010 EUR – 4.11 LEI

2011

Gross Salary

Net Salary

EUR

EUR

Agriculture

338

243

Manufacturing Industry

384

285

Food and Beverage Industry

302

224

Textile Industry

339

255

Chemical Industry

517

380

Machines and Equipment Industry

452

336

Energy Industry

786

565

Construction

367

271

Trade

375

274

Hotels and Restaurants

252

188

Transportation – on land

440

318

Transportation – on water

630

460

Transportation – by air

1091

771

Telecommunication and Postal Services

972

692

Financial Services

1051

749

Education

556

397

OVERALL

472

343

Unemployment is still high in Romania – over 7,2% at the end of 2010. The most affected area is the Southern part of the country (Oltenia province), where the average rate is over 9,5%, 4 times higher than the figure for Bucharest area, where the unemployment is still low – under 2,7%. Another report of NIS emphasizes the difficulties of young people to become integrated on the labor market. The survey results indicate that about 2.590.000 young graduates aged 15–34 years (66.4% in all) failed to find salaried employment for at least three consecutive months, more than one year after leaving the educational system. Of these people, 9.8% held an academic degree, 54.1% of them had completed secondary and post-secondary education, and 36.1% had a low level of education. The large number of young people aged 15–34 years who failed to find significant employment proves the lack of employment opportunities on the Romanian labor market. On the other hand, it is necessary to establish a better match between the focus of school curricula and labor market developments and demands. The unemployment is much higher in rural areas, but from other reasons. Romania has the largest share of rural population among Central and Eastern Europe countries and its rural areas are poor, with deteriorating infrastructure and inadequate water and sanitation services.

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Studies suggest that social passivity, a common problem in post-socialist communities, is a hurdle to development in rural areas. The Romanian Government is trying to attract new investments with a package of regulations and incentives for foreign investments. Foreign investors ask for the Labor Code amendments to include, first of all, labor market flexibility – employees should be easier to recruit and dismiss. Moreover, companies want a legislative stimulation for temporary work, and the notice period for resignations or dismissals to be raised to two months, so that the employee can find a new job and the employer a replacement. The new regulations will thus favor employers. The dissolution of the individual contract at national level means the loss of some guarantees offered to employees, concerning salary or labor time. This contract stipulates certain rules that employee and employer must consider during the negotiation of an individual labor contract, which would mean that, once the national-level contract is eliminated, the minimum standards established on the labor market would also disappear. However, there are also positive signs regarding Romania’s future economy. The total exports figure increased with 25% in 2010, and there are signs that the internal consumption will start a slow recovery this year. Romania will register a slow economic recovery in 2011 after a 2% decrease in 2010; it will also have to deal with tough austerity measures and any opposition to them might produce instability. Economist Intelligence Unit anticipates a 3% economic growth for newly EU members like Romania, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia and a 3.4% growth in 2012. Inflation will be 3.4% in 2011 and 2.7 in 2012. However, the unemployment will return to the 2008 standard only after 2014.

3. EDUCATION IN ROMANIA The education-related requirements of the society and economy have been radically changed by the transition to democracy and market economy, which began in 1990, after the fall of the communist regime. The education reform was marked by three major stages. During the first stage, which lasted from 1990 to 1995, the education system was organized on the basis of Constitution provisions adopted in 1991 and Government decisions, emitted for each school/academic year. The reform measures applied during this stage envisaged mainly the content and finalities of education, as well as the support to improve the access to

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education for all. Facing the requirements for curricula revision and improvement of access to basic education, compulsory education was reduced from 10 to 8 years. The administration of education remained highly centralized, with almost no involvement of the local public authorities and high dependence of the schools on the County School Inspectorates. By the end of this first stage it became more and more evident that a new legislative framework was urgently needed. Based on assessments of the various aspects of the education system, carried out at national and international level (World Bank), the Romanian Government launched, at the beginning of 1994, for a 5-year period, the Pre-tertiary Education Reform Project. In order to ensure financing of the project, the Romanian Government signed, in 1994, a 50 million USD loan agreement with the World Bank. During this stage, the implementation of the Pre-tertiary Education Reform, financed from the state budget and the loan from the World Bank, led to important major changes in curricula, teacher training, pupils’ assessment and evaluation, occupational standards, school textbooks, management and financing of education, education conditions in rural areas etc. Involvement of local authorities in the administration of education became more important, internal and external consultations in the decision-making process at all levels became compulsory and autonomy of the schools increased significantly. The current stage of the education reform began in 2002, with the commitment to participate in the Lisbon Process. Based on the evaluation of progresses achieved in education reform and considering the common European objectives established through "Education & Training 2010” program, the education policy focused on the following priorities: facilitating the access to education, developing human resources for the knowledge society and adjustment of vocational education and training to labor market requirements, in order to ensure economic and social cohesion. Today, the Romanian educational system has the following structure: Pre-school education; Primary education (compulsory); Secondary education (high-school, apprenticeship school, post high-school education); Higher education – undergraduate studies; Graduate studies (MA – Master’s degree, Ph.D). Higher education is provided in Universities, Institutions, Academies, colleges and postuniversity studies schools. The higher education sector in Romania comprises 56 public Universities with 511 faculties and other 28 private Universities. Public education remains the core of the system, with better quality standards.

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General information about the Romanian higher education system: The first Romanian universities were established by Alexandru Ioan Cuza: the University of Iasi (1860) and the University of Bucharest (1864). Higher education is organized in short-term (3 years) and long-term education, the duration of the last varies according to the specialization: 3 years for sciences, humanities, economic, political or social sciences, arts, sports, law, 4 years for engineering, technical, pharmacy studies and 5 years for medicine and architecture. The academic year runs from the 1st of October till June and it is commonly divided into 2 semesters. The Romanian grading system is from 1 (minimum) to 10 (highest mark), 5 being the minimum pass mark. There are several types of institutions in the higher education system: Universities (including a large number of faculties with different specializations), Academies (focusing on a single general field), Polytechnic Universities (technical field of study), Institutes (limited specializations), postgraduate schools (other than those included in the Universities) and colleges (offering 2-3 years of studies). UNIVERSITY CENTERS Bucharest, the capital city, attracts almost one-third of all public University students, the most prestigious public Universities being the Bucharest University, the Academy of Economic Studies, the Polytechnic University, the Academy of Arts, University of Agronomy and the University of Medicine and Pharmacy. Bucharest University is generally considered the leading educational institution in Romania, mostly because it provides a large variety of courses: short and long-duration programs, distance learning programs, Master’s degree and Ph.D programs, advanced postgraduate studies and research programs. The University consists of 21 faculties, each with several specializations, training thousands new students each year. The educational program covers mostly sciences: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, Geography, Geology, History, Psychology etc. The Academy of Economic Studies is the most significant institution for economy and administration education in the country due to the content of its courses and the constant involvement in the national and international economic field. The Academy consists of 10 faculties and 4 colleges, covering several specializations and enrolling over 42.000 students. Some of the specific economic areas covered are Marketing, Management, Commerce, Accounting, Cybernetics, Statistics, Finance and Banking. The Polytechnic University of Bucharest is the largest and oldest technical University in Romania, being the main source of technical specialists in our country. The major fields of study 13


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are Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering and Management and Applied Engineering Studies covered in 12 faculties (some being the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Automation and Computer Science, Faculty of Electronics, Telecommunication and Information Technology, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering) and 2 Technical Colleges. The University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Carol Davila” is among the best medical Universities in the country. Students are trained on General Medicine, Dental Medicine, Pharmacy and Nursing. Other prestigious medical Universities in Romania are the University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Iuliu Hatieganu” located in Cluj-Napoca and the University of Medicine and Pharmacy located in Targu-Mures. Representing the Western part of the country, Timisoara is an important educational centre, gathering thousands of students each year, not only Romanians, but from abroad as well. The most prestigious public institution is The West University of Timisoara. Undergraduate courses are offered in 11 faculties with more than 80 specializations. Students can choose from a large variety of courses: Mathematics and Computer Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography, Sociology, Economic Science, Law, Political Science, etc. The Polytechnic University of Timisoara is one of the largest technical Universities in Romania, the academic studies being delivered in its 10 faculties (Automation and Computer Science, Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering, Civil Engineering and Architecture etc.). One of the most important universities in Transylvania (located in Cluj-Napoca) is "BabesBolyai" University, an educational institution that provides services for more than 45.500 students in the 21 faculties. The University offers study programs in three languages (Romanian, Hungarian and German) for several specializations: Mathematics and Computer Science, Physics, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Biology and Geology, Geography, but also Law, History, Philosophy, Sociology, Social Assistance, Political Science and Economics. Through its 140 years of activity, as well as the 25.000 students and over 1000 academic staff, "Alexandru Ioan Cuza" University is a prestigious institution in the Eastern part of Romania, located in Iasi. At present, the University has 16 faculties, ensuring training for over 40 fields of specialization, such as: Computer Science, Economics and Business Administration, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Law, Philosophy etc. Other higher education centers in Romania are Craiova, Brasov, Constanta, Arad, Oradea, TarguMures and Sibiu.

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One of the visible effects of Romania’s EU accession is the acknowledgement and recognition of Romanian educational degrees in other member countries. This will inevitably challenge the local educational system as competitiveness on a European market will probably dictate an adequate update of curricula and a modification of teaching approach. However, there are many concerns regarding the competiveness of Romanian educational systems in comparison with the most prestigious University centers worldwide. In an international classification of University centers on various quality criteria, the Romanian institutions were not present in top 500 in 2009. The Polytechnic University of Bucharest was on the 778th place, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iasi was on the 935th place, “Gheorghe Asachi” Technical University of Iasi held the 989th place. The other Romanian Universities did not even qualify in the first 1000. The Romanian educational system still has a long way to go in order to reach its potential.

4. POST-GRADUATE EDUCATION IN ROMANIA Similar to other European countries, Romania has developed post-graduate education as an extension of higher education provided in Universities, Academies and Institutes. The local graduate study programs include: Master studies, with a duration of 1 up to 2 years, the certification being a Master’s Diploma or a Diploma of Advanced Studies. Doctoral studies, with a duration of 4 up to 6 years, organized by universities. The title of doctor (Ph.D.) granted by the institution is validated by the National Council for the Attestation of Academic Titles, University Diplomas and Certificates. The Doctoral Diploma is the highest academic degree awarded after extensive study and research and requires the submission of an original thesis. MBA (Master of Business Administration) is a professional degree that aims at training those who work in the business and management environment. Graduate education in Romania has several forms: regular courses, low frequency courses and open distance learning. MASTER STUDIES: Bucharest University offers over 180 Master’s degrees and advanced study programs, over 50 doctoral programs, advanced postgraduate programs, and programs of professional conversion 15


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and development. The Master’s Programs train students in several areas of specialization: Biology, Mathematics, Chemistry, Law, Physics, and History. The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies offers in its 10 faculties 86 Master’s courses, with different economic specializations: Accounting, Finance, Trade, Marketing, Management, etc. One of the largest public universities offering postgraduate courses is the National School of Political and Administrative Studies, located in Bucharest. The main study areas are: Administration, Communication and Public Relations, Political Sciences, Management and European Integration. Prestigious Universities all over the country include in their educational programs several postgraduate courses, covering a large area of specializations. MBA PROGRAMS: In a survey of the best MBA programs in Romania (made by the daily newspaper Ziarul Financiar in the summer of 2009) the first place is held by ASEBUSS (Romanian-American Business School) together with Kennesaw State University – Atlanta, Georgia, SUA. Its aim is to develop a pool of leaders able to communicate with their partners across the world. It was inaugurated in 1993 and it has a continuous focus on improving teaching methodologies and providing an increased exposure of students to issues such as Customer Relationship Management, Change Management, General Business Processes, Communication, etc. There were 71 MBA graduates in 2008 and 75 in 2009 of this program. Bucharest School of Management MBA program is on the second place, with 50 graduates in 2008 and 35 in 2009. On the third place there is the MBA program of City University of Seattle (CityU), with 35 graduates in 2008 and 50 in 2009. Another player in the top 4 is Vienna University of Economics and Business with 15 graduates in 2009. Other important MBA programs on the Romanian Market are offered by DeSales University Pennsylvania, University of Sheffield, CERISS (European Center of International Relationships). The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, along with two well-known universities from Canada, offers The Romanian-Canadian Master of Business Administration, training on basic management disciplines and skills: Economics, Ethics, Finance, Financial and Management Accounting, Human Resources Management and Organizational Behavior, Marketing, Management Information Systems, Operations Management, Statistics, Strategic Management and Policy. Most of the programs are delivered in English. Recently, the education sector has been hit by a series of strikes and protests. The longest conflict took place in November 2005, when a general strike lasted for three weeks and ended 16


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with the government promising to increase teachers’ salaries by approx. 12 %. One-day strikes in 2008 and 2009 were followed by an attempt to initiate a new reform of the education system. Eventually, this reform was annulled by the Constitutional Court.

5. FOREIGN LANGUAGE SKILLS IN ROMANIA All schools in Romania have foreign language programs. Students must study at least one language to an advanced level and a second one at a more basic level. In other cases there are more than two foreign languages available to study and the student can choose from several. Many schools also offer bilingual courses. During the communist period, the main language taught was Russian and German was the second most common. Nowadays things have changed and the school curriculum is very different. According to the results of 2008’s “Key Data on Teaching Languages in Schools in Europe” published by The Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), the top language taught in Romania nowadays is English. Some children start learning it in kindergarten, but usually public schools have a language program which starts in the 2nd grade. The explanation is simple: as we can see on the World Language Map, English is very popular all around the world and nowadays it is necessary to have at least a basic command of the language. In an EU report on foreign language skills it is estimated that over 29% of Romanian natives speak English at an average level (and 10% fluent). The level of English language knowledge is probably higher in urban areas with a higher concentration of University graduates and foreign investments. Proficiency, however, is most likely to be defined as comprehension capacity with an ability to render ideas in an understandable manner. As far as the active labor force is concerned, the level of knowledge of foreign languages, and especially English, has typically improved among employees of international/multinational companies, without being more specifically related to a hierarchical level within the organizational structure. According to the cited study, the second most popular language is French. It is estimated that less than 24% can use French (especially older generations). French is less popular for the vast majority of the active population. The third foreign language is German, with 6% of the population speaking it. Most people who speak German are to be found in Western Romania, Central Transylvania (Sibiu-Brasov), and Banat region (Timisoara and Arad areas).

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Italian and Spanish are the next most commonly taught languages in the educational system. However, after the intense immigration process of Romanian workforce in EU after 2005, a large portion of the 2.5 million Romanians that live abroad has developed Spain and Italian language skills. There are a wide variety of options available and many children choose a specialized public school or high-school because they want to study a certain language and they continue to learn it throughout the curriculum. In the areas highly populated with minority groups, languages like Hungarian, Ukrainian, Serbian, Slovak, Czech or Croatian are taught too (especially in Transylvania). They do not necessarily classify as foreign languages in these circumstances, as they are taught as a result of the structure of society. The challenge of finding experienced professionals in their field of activity field with a good level of French is a bit less difficult than identifying speakers of German, Italian or Spanish. The past years have undoubtedly educated generations into a more flexible and internationally oriented mentality. Thus, it is more and more probable for fresh graduates to have better language skills than already established professionals, thus providing a fresh influx of competencies and enthusiasm in the local business world. It seems that all changes in society lead to changes in the learning process. If you were to ask a young Romanian something in English, you would definitely get an answer. This is less likely to happen amongst the older generation, as English was not so much an integral part of the curriculum when they were in formal education.

6. KEY ROMANIAN LABOUR CODE INFORMATION In 2003 the Romanian Parliament approved the new Labor Code. The Labor Code from 2003 was the first Labor Law after the fall of the communist regime, and was heavily unbalanced in favor of the employees’ rights. For instance, the Labor Code acknowledges 304 legal rights – 248 for the employees and 56 for the employers. As a direct result, the number of civil cases grew with 32% in the first year. The current Romanian Labor Law came into being during the year 2005, with the major purpose to adapt the Romanian regulations to the new economical environment, in a more flexible and business oriented manner. Among the major changes in the current Labor Code are:

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a. An increased labor market flexibility along with the relaxation of restrictions about the duration and manner of concluding individual employment contracts. Up to this point, fixedterm employment contracts have rarely been used and have been little regulated. The current regulations extend the maximum duration of a fixed-term employment contract from 18 to 24 months. There can be no more than three successive fixed-term employment contracts within this period; after that the employer must fill the vacancy with an unlimited employment contract. In other words, the content of the contract can be modified three times in the course of 24 months, compared with a single contract with an 18-month validity stipulated by the previous Code. b. The simplification of employee record-keeping procedures. The employers must draw-up a general employee record-keeping register. The register now lists all employees by date of employment, specifying occupation, type of individual employment contract (fixed-term or unlimited) and contract termination date. Previously, the register also listed individual employment contract-related elements, as well as all events occurring in terms of work relationships such as execution, amendment, suspension or termination of the employment contract. c. To make individual dismissal and collective lay-offs more flexible, a number of changes have been made, such as: at the end of the trial period, both employer and employee may terminate the individual employment contract by giving written notice; in defining collective lay-offs, the minimum number of employees made redundant increased from 5 to 10 in the case of employers with 20 up to 100 employees; an employer is no longer compelled to present a social security program and training and development measures before resorting to collective lay-offs; written notification of redundancy decisions to trade unions is shortened from 45 to 30 days. Trade unions or employee representatives can propose measures to be taken by employers in order to avoid redundancies or to reduce the number of redundant employees within a shorter period of time from the date of notification receipt (from 20 to 15 days) and the employer must respond within five days (compared with 10 days, as previously stipulated). The local employment inspectorate may order a delay of no more than 10 days (compared with the 15 days as previously stipulated) of the date of issuing the decision. The employer may not fill vacancies resulting from redundancies for a period of nine months (compared with the 12 months stipulated in the former Labor Code). To improve the flexibility of the legal length of working time and make it easier to resort to overtime, the reference period for calculating the maximum number of working hours per week (48 hours) - beyond which limit overtime is officially acknowledged - has been extended from 19


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2011

three weeks to one month and in the case of certain sectors may even reach 12 months. Over this limit, an employer may request overtime hours from employees only by invoking absolute necessity or emergency situations. d. The current provisions place employers under the obligation to finance and ensure the participation of all employees in training and development programs, at least once every two years in the case of companies with minimum 21 employees and once every three years in the case of companies with fewer than 21 employees. Companies with over 20 employees must develop and implement annual training and development programs, which are added to the company collective agreement (in the former Labor Code this provision was mandatory for all companies regardless of the number of employees). Another novelty is the fact that both employer and employee may take the initiative in terms of training and development programs. e. The current Code has introduced additional provisions on contraventions and penalties related to work relationships, such as fines for non-observance of overtime regulations, for failure to pay an indemnity for temporary interruption of activity, or breaching of provisions on night work. Non-observance of regulations on employment of under-age workers or giving them jobs that run counter to regulations on work conditions for minors are punishable by one to three years in prison. f. A non-competition clause in employment contracts, which has been a source of numerous discussions between social partners, has finally been regulated in the new Code. It becomes effective subsequent to the termination of an employment contract (the former employee concerned must receive an indemnity of no less than 50% of the average gross salary in the six months prior to the end of the employment contract), if the employment contract specifies the activities prohibited to the employee, duration of prohibition, the third parties which the employee must not work for, as well as the prohibited geographical area. Among the most important stipulations of the current Labor law are: a. The individual labor contract/agreement – The Romanian labor code insists upon the absolute necessity for the individual work contract/ agreement to be signed by the person occupying the respective position and the employer. Following this agreement, the employee gains salary rights as well as any other rights and obligations as stipulated in the labor legislation by collective or individual work agreements. The individual work contract can also be agreed upon for a limited period of time. The work time/day is 8 hours. The labor contract must be registered with the authorities as well as in the General Employee Book, announcing the Financial Administration and/ or the employee fiscal registration regarding foreign or Romanian citizens with no fiscal address in Romania, so as to ensure they are allocated a fiscal registration code, filling-in the information in the labor book (by personnel certified by the authorities to keep and 20


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register information in these books), ensuring the delivery of the work safety training to all employees and setting up the employee’s personal file. The individual work contract has to be drafted and signed in Romanian, in three copies (this being the responsibility of the employer, as stipulated in the labor code). An important addition to this section of the labor code specifies the employer’s obligation to inform the potential or current employer regarding any modifications or general clauses to be included in the labor contract. The duration of work time can be extended to 48 hours/week (and even over this, if the extension is only for a limited range), including over-time. The important condition to be met is for the average work time (calculated over a calendar month) not to sum up more than 48 hours/week. b. The collective labor contract is defined as a contractual agreement between an employer/ group of employers on the one hand and employees, represented by unions on the other hand. This agreement defines the labor conditions, salary levels as well as rights and obligations that spring from these work activities. According to the active legal constraints, employers are under the obligation to negotiate a collective labor contract only if they employ more than 21 people. The obligation to negotiate is not associated with the obligation to reach a certain result. The law does not specify the fact that the negotiation has to be finalized with the draft of a collective agreement. c. The collective working agreement is negotiated on a limited period of time that cannot be shorter than 12 months. The Romanian law stipulates that the Internal Regulation Act is a necessary addition to the individual or collective labor contract. This act (the Employee Handbook) will be distributed to all employees and will contain information related to the organization of labor, personnel policies, professional ethics and other contractual conditions. d. Health and Safety at work – The health and safety committee has to be established in case of organizations with more than 50 employees or following the specific request of the labor inspector, in case of organizations with less than 50 employees, but with very difficult working conditions, potentially damaging to the employees’ health. Depending on the total number of employees in the organization, several representatives are assigned as members of this committee (1 representative for less than 50 employees, 3 for a number of employees between 50 and 199, and up to 9 for over 1500 employees). The Labor Code does not stipulate any particular clauses related to salary negotiation. The only constraint is for the negotiated salary not to be lower than the minimum agreed salary, currently at the level of 600 LEI gross/month. In case of employees with higher education, the minimum agreed salary is 1200 LEI gross/ month. As far as the benefits package is concerned, this is a relatively new notion that has only lately imposed itself on the labor market. The way in 21


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which benefits are granted to various employee categories is primarily a direct consequence of internal company policies and is not regulated by the labor code in terms of absolute necessity for certain positions. According to the labor code, salary-related incomes cover all the benefits of a financial nature obtained by an employee working under the conditions of a labor contract, irrespective of the way in which the income is defined and the form under which they are transferred to the employee. The incomes falling under the “salary� category are: base salaries bonuses of any kind any sums representing annual bonuses and incentives, percentage of profit participation etc. payment for the annual holiday legal payment in case of temporary work incapacity Other benefits might include full-time company car, company mobile phone (including expenses), insurance of any kind (apart from the compulsory ones), traveling permits of any kind (used for personal purposes), use of a company flat and payment by the company of the subsequent facilities, presents of any kind. Please note that according to the labor code financial or other benefits fall under heavy taxation constraints. GROSS SALARY STRUCTURE Taxes paid by the EMPLOYER in 2010: Percentage of the gross Title salary CAS (contribution to social insurance) 20.80%

Unemployment fund

0.5%

Health Insurance

5.20%

Health contribution Labor Chamber Commission

22

0.15% or 0,85% (depending on the risk level of the labor conditions) 0.25%

Comments Cannot be higher than 5 times the national gross average salary; goes to the state budget. Goes to the national unemployment insurance budget. Goes to the National Health Insurance budget. For work-related accidents or professional illnesses. Goes to the local Work Office.


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA

2011

Taxes paid by the EMPLOYEE in 2010:

Title Unemployment fund Health Insurance CAS (contribution to social insurance) Salary tax

Percentage of the gross salary 0.5% 5.5 % (starting with 1st July 2008) 10.5% (from which 2% represents the private pension fund) 16%

Comments Goes to the national unemployment insurance budget. Goes to the National Health Insurance budget. Cannot be higher than 5 times the national gross average salary; goes to the state budget. Goes to the state budget.

Note: The net/gross ratio is of approximately 1.9 (net*1.9= total gross costs) OTHER CONTRACTUAL CLAUSES: Apart from the generic/ typical clauses, any labor contract may also contain reference to other special issues such as: clauses pertaining to professional training, non-competitiveness clauses, mobility or confidentiality clauses. The non-competitiveness clause binds the employee not to perform (in his/her or a third party’s interest) any activity that competes with the specific activities of his/her employer. This clause is only valid if the individual labor contract clearly specifies the activities that cannot be performed by the employee during the validity of the contractual agreement. The non-competitiveness clause is not valid for the trial period and can only be extended for a maximum of 6 months after the termination of the labor contract for positions that only imply execution responsibilities and maximum 2 years for managerial jobs. In case of extension of the clause following the termination of the labor contract, the employer is under the obligation to pay a compensation amount to the former employee. The minimum accepted amount is of 6 salaries. The mobility clause refers to the necessity that the employee’s activity be performed in various places. In this particular case the employee benefits from incentives (which can be of a financial nature, but not necessarily). By signing a confidentiality agreement, the two parties agree that throughout the duration of the labor contract as well as after its termination, no data or information the employee has found out during the contractual period are to be transmitted to a third party.

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TERMINATION OF THE LABOR CONTRACT According to the Romanian Labor Code, there are several legal ways in which a work contract can be ended, among which: following the two parties’ agreement or following the employer’s initiative (dismissal). Termination of the labor agreement following the employer’s initiative This type of decision has to be communicated in writing and needs to be supported by arguments regarding the legal background of the contract’s termination, as well as the period of time during which the decision can be brought to trial. The firing decisions have to registered with the Regional Labor Office within 5 days from their issue. The law does not allow dismissals in the following circumstances: temporary work incapacity according to medical certificates, quarantine leave, pregnancy, maternity leave, maternity risk leave, child-raising leave (until 2 or 3 years in case of handicapped children), military service, annual leave. Dismissal decisions can also be taken following employee’s repeated deviations from work discipline or from the clauses established in the individual work contract, lack of suitability with the professional requirements of the allocated position, as well as psychiatric incapacity of the person to perform the job. However, all such decisions need to be carefully documented and supported with relevant proof. Last but not least, termination of the labor contract may happen in case the position is permanently deleted from the organization’s chart due to economic difficulties, technical modifications or re-organizing of the activity. Collective lay-off due to economic difficulties is also a version of work contract termination, entailing specific responsibilities for the employer regarding the negotiation of severance packages, as well as implementation of outplacement programs. The laid-off employees are entitled to a notice period that cannot be under 15 working days. The same applies for the cessation of the work contract following the employee’s resignation. The notice period is agreed upon by the two parties and mentioned in the individual or collective work contracts and cannot be bigger than 15 calendar days for employees occupying execution functions and respectively 30 calendar days for those that occupy managerial functions. The employee is entitled to resignation without abiding by the notice period constraint in case the employer has not fulfilled its contractual obligations. The debate regarding the Romanian Labor Code flexibility and capability of the Romanian Labor market to attract major investments started again at the beginning of 2010. There are strong demands from the business environment for further changes regarding the Labor Code in 2011.

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The Foreign Investors Council pleaded for amending the current Labor Code on various current legislative aspects. The request for the Labor Code amendments to include, first of all, labor market flexibility – people should be easier to recruit and dismiss. Also, companies want a legislative stimulation for temporary work, and the notice period for resignations or dismissals to be raised to two months, so that the employee could find a new job and the employer a replacement. Foreign investors want to eliminate collective labor agreements at branch or national level, when there’s already an existing individual labor agreement. They also want the law to include performance expectations, so as to be able to keep efficient employees and not the ones with seniority. The draft of the new Labor Code is high on the Romanian Government’s agenda and there are strong expectations that a new Labor Code will come into force until the summer of 2011. This document provides, inter alia, a longer probationary period for staff hiring, as well as an extended period for the termination notice or fixed-term work contracts. According to the draft document, the probationary period is extended from 30 to 45 days for employees, and from 90 to 120 days for staff in management positions; the termination notice period is also increased from 15 to 20 days, whereas fixed-term labor contracts are extended from 24 to 36 months. The new Code also allows the employer to establish employee performance standards. The new Labor Code is intended to be flexible, encourage Romanian and foreign investors, remove ambiguities and be compliant with European legislation.

7. INSIGHT INTO ROMANIAN WORK MENTALITIES From many points of view, Romanians are seen as obedient to more powerful levels of authority. Romanian employees prefer to have a strong relationship with a single manager, in order to benefit from protection, thus avoiding to manifest opinions that are different from those of the higher power. Generally, they follow the directions of their managers without questioning or asking for further explanations. There is fear of exposure and failure; failure can be viewed as a personal short-coming and can cause long-term loss of confidence by the individual as well as by the group. This attitude proves that Romania needs powerful leaders, centralized decisions, and that the population prefers to follow the rules established by its leaders. In Romania, as in other hierarchical societies, managers may take a somewhat paternalistic attitude towards their employees. They may demonstrate a concern for employees that goes beyond the workplace and strictly professional concerns. This may include involvement in their family, health, and other practical life issues. Most of the times, the employees of Romanian companies do not have perspective on their work. The high level of uncertainty in the social, political and economic environment generated a focus on short-term issues, rather than on 25


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA

2011

taking the long-term view. This is one of the reasons why the saving rate is very low in Romania and most people choose to apply for loans. The managerial style practiced in Romania is a combination of a familiar management style which emphasizes the welfare and personal interests of employees and an autocratic German management style where honor, company’s interests and reputation are the main values. Generally, Romanian employees prefer the type of manager who takes risks and responsibilities and consider that the best leaders are the ones who protect them and provide advantages. In “Business in CEE 20 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain” – a survey conducted by TARGET International Executive Search and Henley Business School, there were some very interesting findings regarding Romanian work mentalities. Many of the items where Romania was ranked first or second relate to the energy and dynamism of the people. For example: active and dynamic business environment; ambition is admired; managers tend to be excellent at selling; there is a strong entrepreneurial spirit. By contrast, some negative features were underlined as well: business is not well organized and efficient; deadlines and timetables are not always taken seriously; teamwork is poor; managers do not prefer to work in a planned way. In post-communist countries, there is a tradition of teamwork inherited from the communal aspects of the previous era where groups and work units commonly met together to discuss ideas and create plans. However, those plans seldom resulted in implementation or results, leading to apathy and cynicism among the workers. Today, the after-effects are still evident among much of the older generation resulting in a lack of drive and energy. However, there is vibrancy among the younger generation, who seem to be eager to tackle many of the challenges and take the opportunities presented. They will participate in teams and share ideas, but intercultural sensitivity will be needed and it should be understood that they will need to be coached in the process. In order to achieve successful cross-cultural management in Romania it is important to understand that there is still a great deal of bureaucracy. Business moves somehow at a slow pace, and patience will be a necessary cross-cultural attribute; therefore, personal relationships are crucial if you want to cut through the red tape. Business is hierarchical and the decisionmaking power is held at the top of the company. Most decisions require several layers of approval. At times it may appear that no one wants to accept responsibility for making the decision. Formality was part of the country’s work ethic for a long time. Thus, the “first name” fashion has only managed to contaminate the environment in a gradual manner. Again, the multinational environment is a champion in this respect, as the culture disseminated is one more oriented towards a more relaxed approach (without affecting efficiency and professionalism). Formality is also manifested in what the dress code is concerned. Romanians 26


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2011

have a tendency to dress in such a way as to reflect their position (social and professional status). Though the dress code for business is a very strict one, “casual Fridays” and less formal attire tend to gain more ground in industries/fields where creativity and innovation are more praised than rigidity and structure. Although the collective type of culture prevails in Romania, specialists estimate that in the future the level of individualism will grow and the individual type of culture will predominate. The main factors that contribute to the process of cultural change towards individualism are the presence of the multinational companies on the Romanian market and external financing. The two factors essentially determined the socio-economic development of Romania. Still, the work mentalities have undergone significant changes during the past years, the private sector being less and less indebted to the former paradigms. Romanians’ interest in working for multinational companies has increased consistently during the transition years and maintains a healthy percentage of growth these days as well. Multinational organizations have cultivated an employer image interested in their employees’ development and professional enrichment. Furthermore, they are expected to bring about systems and procedures, the exactness and correctness of which encourages and acknowledges professionalism and quality work. The concept of “corporate culture” is no longer a novelty among Romanian professionals and is lately supported by a concern for human resources policies that ensure personal and professional development in an environment oriented towards transparent opportunities rather than political merit. However, it is important to notice the fact that as far as interest towards working with multinational companies is concerned, the change as compared to the beginning of the 90’s is to be found in the way in which potential employees analyze the exact characteristics of the opportunities offered, their market awareness level increasing and reputations of companies being more or less established. To conclude, the status of multinational does not necessarily guarantee the professionals’ interest, reputation however does. Relocation availability is probably one of the signs of normality of the Western work force. When analyzing this value upon the background of the current Romanian work environment, one easily notices an increasing openness towards this, especially as far as the local managerial elite is concerned. Still, stability (defined as strong bonding with a certain place) remains a Romanian trait and family-related issues may still have preeminence over career opportunities. When relocation is considered, Romanians have also increased their awareness of its financial implications and may be expected to negotiate substantial packages in this respect. The message here is clear – Romanians must apply their undoubted energy and entrepreneurial spirit to clearing up the mess – planning, structuring, strategizing and, most importantly, learning to work in teams. 27


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2011

The good news is that Romanian labor force can compete with other countries with success. After 3 years of stagnation (2007/2009) the current productivity of the average Romanian employee is growing again. Each Romanian employee in a multinational generated an annual gross profit of 5,898 EUR in 2009 to foreign investors, surprisingly nearly 8% higher than that generated by a Western European employee, shows a survey conducted by the audit and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Romania. In the preceding year, the annual gross profit per employee had been 2.910 EUR, but the redundancies led to a profit increase. The results are unexpected, considering that the GDP per capita in Germany, for instance, is four times higher as in Romania. Return on human capital in Romania went up 20% against 2008 because labor costs are over 50% lower than the European average. Each Romanian employee in a multinational generated a 102% higher gross profit against 2008. The survey involved 58 companies of which 76% were private foreign companies. Nearly half of them had at least 1,000 employees and revenues above 100 million EUR.

8. ROMANIAN MEDIA AND HUMAN CAPITAL RECRUITMENT Most recruitment advertisements refer to entry-level and specialist positions; when it comes to hiring middle and top management candidates, employers tend to use other recruitment channels such as executive search or networking. Generally, through media search only 10-15% of the initial applications are taken into consideration at the end of the screening process. Situations when the job advertisement does not mention the name of the employer were quite frequent before 2008, mostly for confidentiality reasons, but now this has changed. In these cases, employers prefer to “hide� under a vague description (i.e. multinational company active in the industrial field) in order to receive applications from candidates motivated by the job description, not by the company name. The ads usually inform potential candidates about the main responsibilities of the advertised job, the requirements, but the salary or benefits are rarely mentioned. The most important Romanian business publications are: BIZ is a bi-monthly business magazine. Its circulation reaches a monthly average of 10,000 copies and targets young urban career-oriented professionals, 92% being University graduates. The Biz mission is to provide business leaders with information and stories that anticipate major trends and identify new opportunities.

28


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2011

BUSINESS REVIEW, a weekly magazine with a circulation of 10,000 copies per issue, distributed in Bucharest, mainly in business centers, leading hotels, newsstands and trade shows. Over two thirds of BR readers are senior executives and decision makers. The 48-page English language magazine offers to its readers news, interviews, analyses, IT, media, banking, real estate, after hours, events, people on the move, etc. CAPITAL is a weekly magazine distributed nationally in over 44,200 copies per issue. It targets readers from the business sector, offering comprehensive information on investment, services, industry, finance and banking. Every year the magazine promotes interesting supplements (The 100 most successful business people in Romania). CARIERE is the first Romanian human capital magazine, a monthly business resource that targets active managers, leaders and professionals involved in all fields of economy. The 64-colour page newspaper is printed in 8.500 copies on each issue and it is distributed nationally. Through its articles, analyses and studies, the magazine offers solutions to career challenges: training needs, competences assessment, psychological tests, labor legislation etc. ROMANIA LIBERA is a daily newspaper, distributed nationally, with over 50,000 copies per issue. The publication brings to readers’ attention numerous subjects from economy, social, politics area. Of high interest for companies and potential candidates is the special section with job openings, attached each Monday to the newspaper. ZIARUL FINANCIAR is a popular daily business newspaper, distributed nationally in over 18,000 copies per issue. The 16-page newspaper has a constantly improved content and by its numerous weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual supplements (such as DESCOPERA, GO4IT!, PRO MOTOR) has an audience of over 160,000 readers per issue. The publication informs its readers about events in Marketing, Management, IT & Telecommunication, Banking, etc. Advertising a vacancy represents a challenge in order to save time and reduce the cost of the selection process. BUSINESS STANDARD claims to be the first newspaper dedicated to a European business community, with 16.000 copies. Business Standard is a complete media product that provides quick and high quality information every day. Its target audience is business people – entrepreneurs, investors, managers, bankers, but also professionals in the middle class, interested in starting their own business or investment. As far as the most efficient way to post job ads is concerned, apart from business publications, the specialized Internet sites have become a useful recruitment tool in the last years. Among the numerous HR sites on the Internet today, the most popular, both for employers and candidates, are www.BestJobs.ro and www.ejobs.ro. 29


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2011

BestJobs/Neogen holds over 1,350,000 potential candidates (CVs) and 34,000 employers in the database. The process of finding qualified candidates with specific experience is simple and the costs and time for recruitment are reduced. Posting an ad costs over 65 EUR and it is displayed for 30 days. CVs are received shortly after posting the ad and the system offers you multiple tools for CVs sorting/listing, communication with the applicants and administration of the whole recruiting process. eJobs was the first Romanian HR website, at present being visited by over 1.000,000 visitors each month. There are over 1,900,000 CVs in the database. Vacancies are posted for 30 days, the company being able to choose from several types of concepts, forms, dimensions and price ranges. Various vacancies are being advertised in the media, but the general trend is to post ads for entry-level and specialist level. When recruiting for middle, top management and very specialized positions, one should consider other methodologies than the classical advertisement. The Romanian market has witnessed the development of a pool of companies active in the field of recruitment and human resources consulting services. However, the process of selecting the best provider needs to take into consideration aspects such as: experience on the market, validity of contact network, exposure to similar projects, specific knowledge of the market, accuracy of information offered, length of recruitment process, guarantee period and costs. Last but not least, when choosing a service provider in this field, one should also consider further personnel-related needs. While recruitment assignments can be considered a good start in establishing a fruitful collaboration with a sub-contractor, its capacity to provide integrated Human Resources services in this competitive market cannot be underestimated. Training services have undergone significant development during the transition years, local companies now providing a wide range of tailored programs and professing flexibility to client needs as one of their main business drivers. Last but not least, such concepts as outplacement, leasing and payroll are no longer a novelty among human resources services providers. Competency in these areas is also to be evaluated on the basis of exposure to similar projects, level of complexity and, necessarily, seniority of the consultants involved. Currently (March 2011) there are over 35.000 positions available for entry, middle and specialist levels on job sites, 60% more than in 2008. In February 2011, according to E-jobs, the largest number of job ads was for positions in the following functional areas: Sales 30

5.600 positions


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA Marketing, Public Relations and Advertising Customer Service IT Engineering, Production

2011

3.500 positions 3.094 positions 3.000 positions 1.500 positions

Social networks (LinkedIn, Xing, Twitter and Facebook) and other channels are also used for recruitment projects, especially for middle management and management positions. It is estimated that over 136.000 Romanian professionals have LinkedIn accounts, 600% more than in 2009.

9. BRIEF SALARY AND BENEFITS INFORMATION FOR KEY POSITIONS Note: The information below is intended to provide an overview of specifics of the mentioned positions and does not claim to be an exhaustive salary and benefits analysis. Position Title

GENERAL MANAGER

Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and industry sectors)

Managing Director Chief Operating Officer Chief Executive Officer General Manager positions occupied by locals are still not very wide spread in Romania as far as international/multinational companies are concerned. However, there is an obvious increase in the level of trust granted to local competencies for these strategic positions. While there are companies in which the percentage of administrative and coordination roles of this position take pre-eminence over the strategic planning part, local General Managers might in time prove their ability not only to implement policies, but also to develop and adapt them to market specifics. This actually represents the added value of a local professional in this role and cannot be underestimated. Professionals that have reached this position usually have a background in sales with well-known multinational companies. It is only rarely that such positions are occupied by previous Finance or Marketing Managers. Most often than not, the educational background of these professionals will include graduation of an MBA (either with a local school or abroad) as well as of other high-quality training sessions. Their competencies are necessarily multi-functional, comprising an

How the position has evolved over time

31


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA Position Title

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector) Salary ranges

Specific benefits

32

2011

GENERAL MANAGER understanding of the financial implications of business decisions, but not being limited to this. Their personality profile is usually that of a risk taker with a constant orientation towards results and an innovative thinking pattern in terms of strategic design. As far as the motivational patterns of candidates accessing these positions are concerned, one should expect a particular interest in the size of the business, strategic investment plans and image on the international market. Last but not least, these candidates are particularly motivated by the degree of freedom in making decisions and by the level of trust with which they are invested, becoming increasingly frustrated should the environment prove to be a limiting and excessively controlling one. Organizational goals development (establish organizational goals in accordance with group interests) Strategy and policy formulation (define strategies and formulate policies to ensure organizational objectives are met) Operational management Public relations (representation of the company) Finance Sales/ Business Development, Marketing Production, IT, Logistics Small organizations: 2.000 – 4.000 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 3.500 – 6.000 EUR net/month Large organizations: over 6.000 EUR net/month Company car, mobile phone, laptop Insurance (life + medical) Performance related bonuses Company shares


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA 2011 Position Title Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and industry sectors)

FINANCE MANAGER Finance Director Chief Financial Officer Finance Managers continue to be highly valued in the Romanian business environment. Thus, this has led in the past years to the creation of a professional elite in this field, with an analytical approach to career changes. While at the beginning of the 90’s local finance professionals were mainly dealing with the administration of the documents according to active legal constraints, the increasing number of multinational companies with complicated reporting structures as well as the settling in Romania of wellknown audit companies have changed the ways in which the finance profession is viewed and acknowledged.

How the position has evolved over time

Finance professionals have increased their role in the strategic management of the business, in development of risk analysis and adequate subsequent planning. Responsibilities now include reporting according to international standards, strategic investment coordination and implementation of efficient financial procedures according to new market realities. While a significant number of finance professionals have embarked upon ACCA courses, those that have not yet finished the program might consider support from the company in this respect as a motivational issue. Furthermore, finance professionals might now be more motivated than ever to acquire a strategic position within a well-established company (or one under a solid growth pattern). Interestingly, many of them confess an active interest in being part of a start-up company, thus being given the possibility of a fresh start in terms of policies, procedures and strategies. Last but not least, their interest in regional responsibilities is not to be overlooked.

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

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Management of accounting and financial departments Consolidated reporting according to group/company standards Development and implementation of specific procedures in areas such as: accounting, revenue control and investments, budget, contract administration. etc.


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA Position Title

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector)

Salary ranges

Specific benefits

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2011

FINANCE MANAGER Interaction with internal and external audit staff Accounting Financial Analysis Reporting and cost controlling Possible: Payroll IT Security Human resources Legal Small organizations: 1.500 – 2.500 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 2.000 – 4.000 EUR net/month Large organizations: over 4.000 EUR net/month Company car, mobile phone, laptop; Insurance (life, health etc.)


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA 2011 Position Title Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and industry sectors)

How the position has evolved over time

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector)

HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGER Human Resources Coordinator/ Supervisor/ Responsible Professionals in this field have mainly been formed in multinational companies, but due to an inertia in mentalities they have been going a long way without their importance being properly recognized. When looking for an HR manager, one should consider evaluating professionals based on their exposure to concrete areas of practice and not just theoretical knowledge. In spite of the relatively low positioning of this function within organizations during the 90’s, the environment has managed to create an elite of professionals in this field as well (competence not being necessarily related to the graduation of specific courses). The current role of the Human Resources Manager necessarily includes participation in strategic development planning, implementation of HR policies and strategies consistent with the company’s culture and local market environment. The shift in this case will be from administrator to trusted advisor. Human Resources planning within an agreed budget Develop staffing plans, coordinate recruitment and selection Intermediate work relations between employees and company management Ensure the development of adequate HR instruments (performance management, training and development, payroll etc.) Ensure the legal compliance of all personnel related documents Maintain the relation with the Trade Union, participate in the negotiation of the collective work agreement (if applicable) Training, Recruitment, Payroll Possible: Health& Safety, Legal, Office assistant

Salary ranges

Small organizations: 1000 – 1500 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 1500 – 3000 EUR net/month Large organizations: 3.000-5.000 EUR net/month

Specific benefits

Company car, mobile, laptop Insurance (health, life)

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AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA 2011

Position Title

MARKETING MANAGER

Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and Marketing Coordinator/ Responsible industry sectors) While at the beginning of the 90’s the concept of “locally developed brand� was almost non-existent and the marketing profession was more limited to the implementation and adaptation of international strategies into an immature market, with the further development of multinational organizations and the take-over of production facilities, marketing professionals have in time moved from a position of execution to one of conception, playing a major strategic role in the development of the business as such. Market research has also gained significant ground, as well as the active interest in trade marketing initiatives (in order to better bridge the forever existing gap between marketing objectives and sales strategies).

How the position has evolved over time

Thus, nowadays, a marketing professional is expected to possess a varied range of competencies that would help him/ her project marketing relates decisions into such areas as finance and sales. Top professionals in this field will also have a background of achievement in product development (coupled therefore with an understanding of production restraints) with such specific areas as labeling and packaging design, as well as development of price strategies. The motivation of such professionals comes from the opportunity of being exposed to the rigors of an international environment while also being offered the possibility to manifest creativity and innovation in an increasingly competitive market. When considering accepting a position, they will be extensively concerned with the future development plans, with the size of the allocated budget and last but not least with the driving force of the business.

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

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Development of the marketing strategy, advertising/ promotion campaigns, launch campaigns Forecasting profitability rates and market share performance New brand/product development Managing/Coordinating marketing mix Monitoring brand performance


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA Position Title

2011

MARKETING MANAGER Price strategy recommendations

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector)

Salary ranges

Specific benefits

37

Brand Managers Market research analysts Trade Marketing Events Promotion Small organizations: 1.000 – 1.800 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 1.500 – 3.000 EUR net/month Big organizations: 3.000 – 5.000 EUR net/month Insurance Specific training Performance related bonuses


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA 2011 Position Title Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and industry sectors)

SALES MANAGER National Sales Manager Country Sales Manager Business Development Manager The sales profession has been one of the areas attracting the highest level of interest from the beginning of the transition period. Entering sales was one of the most inspired decisions of many graduates of Technical Universities at the start of the 90’s. Being mostly engaged in a growth period, companies were at the moment open towards employing candidates with potential rather than experience and supporting them in the development process. This is the generation that has currently reached the level of National Sales Manager and even General Manager.

How the position has evolved over time

The competencies that this professional elite has developed were to a large extent related to a thorough understanding of the Western concept of commerce, the management of complex distribution systems, the understanding and practice of the merchandising techniques, sales planning and routing, etc. In time, these specific skills were enriched with openness towards the other sides of the business that implied a better understanding of the marketing and financial aspects. A significant number of Sales Managers considered at some time the necessity of enrolling in specialized MBA courses in order to further qualify their knowledge and help position their expertise upon a more valuable level. These days, the notion of sales as such is more often than not surpassed by the idea of business development as a concept which accommodates a larger understanding of sales in terms of strategic planning in organizations the activity of which aims at internationalization of endeavors and ultimately recognition of products on an international scale. The motivation of professionals in this field, while still significantly related to the financial side, has lately undergone some changes. Sales Managers will be concerned about company image and reputation, autonomy of decision-making processes and coherent career development opportunities.

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AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA Position Title

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector)

Salary ranges

Specific benefits

2011

SALES MANAGER Strategic sales plan development Objective establishing Progress evaluation and monitoring Distribution and volume targets forecasting Negotiations Team management and development Field sales Distribution Sales support Possible Supply chain Marketing Customer care Small organizations: 1.200 – 2.000 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 2.000 – 3.500 EUR net/month Big organizations: over 4.000 EUR net/month Company car, mobile, laptop Insurance Specific training Performance related bonus. Note: the salary usually includes fixed and variable pay (the percentage being 70% - 30% most of the time).

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AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA 2011 Position Title Equivalent titles (depending on the type of company and industry sectors)

How the position has evolved over time

Typical Key Responsibility Areas

Typical subordinate areas (usually specific, depending on the industry sector) Salary ranges

Specific benefits

40

PRODUCTION MANAGER Manufacturing Manager Plant Manager Operations Manager Technical Manager One of the main challenges for professionals in this field of activity has been a widening and enrichment of their understanding of production flow and related managerial responsibilities. The necessity to accommodate within their everyday activities such initiatives as efficiency and effectiveness improvement prompted them into enriching their knowledge and implementing novel systems and solutions. The production professional’s profile is now seen as strategic within the organization’s structure. His responsibilities are now strongly related to the management of quality-related initiatives, as well as to the provision of an efficient interaction with other key business areas, such as finance, sales and marketing. While traditionally the production-related positions were considered less flexible in terms of relocation or undertaking of a more varied range of activities, the late trends indicate an openness towards positions not necessarily within the comfort related geographical areas. However, financial packages have also adjusted themselves in order to accommodate this flexibility and provide a necessary balance. Production Maintenance Facility management Volume, quality and cost objectives Investments Ensure the transfer of new projects Production, Maintenance, Production planning Possible Process & Engineering, Quality Assurance, Warehouse Small organizations: 800 – 1200 EUR net/month Medium organizations: 1400 – 2500 EUR net/month Big organizations: over 3000 EUR net/month Company car, mobile, laptop Insurance


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA

2011

10. PERSPECTIVES ON THE ROMANIAN ECONOMY Despite taking a heavy blow in 2009 due to the global economic downturn, we believe that the outlook on Romanian economy remains fairly bright over the long term. The limited private sector debt burden, the fairly robust banking sector, flexible exchange rate and large consumer market are the reasons underpinning our favorable assessment. Romania will emerge from recession in 2011, after “ending an extremely difficult year, with harsh austerity measures, which were necessary and which give reason for a moderate optimism for next year” according to Romanian PM Emil Boc. Romanian export-oriented manufacturing industries will continue to grow in 2011, further supporting economic recovery, whereas sectors such as retail and construction will be negatively influenced by low consumer confidence. Financial experts’ forecasts on the evolution of the Romanian economy in the first six months of 2011, issued in December 2010, rated Romania as the country with the best economic prospects in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), according to a survey conducted by the ZEW Institute and the Austrian group Erste. Among the most competitive and dynamic sectors are R&D, Automotive Industry, Energetic sector, Telecommunication, Wood Industry, Transport & Logistic and BPO Centers. Romania is one of the strongest markets in Europe for technology investment and trade, with a highly skilled technology workforce, competitive costs, top-tier investors and a friendly business environment. As the fastest growing and top IT market in Europe, Romanian companies serve the world's most demanding offshore customers in IT outsourcing, business process outsourcing, call center support, and product development. The Romanian IT market follows that of Poland, the second largest market in Central and Eastern Europe. According to a technical study made by Vesta Wind Systems at the beginning of 2011, Romania has the greatest potential for growth in the wind energy industry in Eastern Europe in the next five years. Romania may produce as much as 14,000 megawatts of wind energy and may develop into a sustainable market. Romania is attracting investors in wind power because of its location along the Western shore of the Black Sea, where the average wind speed is about 25.2 kilometers per hour. The local industry has the potential to generate as much as 30.7 billion kilowatt-hours a year, powering the equivalent of Ireland, Serbia and Peru and giving Romania an edge against other East-European nations. In terms of risks, we believe that the ongoing political fragility, corruption, population decline and the eventual adoption of the EUR could be significant drawbacks to growth. Romania's entry in the Schengen Area, within which borderless travel is possible, has been postponed. The European Commission refused to present progress reports on Romania's and 41


AIMS HUMAN CAPITAL ROMANIA

2011

Bulgaria's progress toward accession to the European Parliament, and gave no reason for its decision, meaning that the two countries will be unable to join as originally planned in March 2011. Several Western Europe countries' hesitance to allow Romania and Bulgaria into the Schengen Area results from their poor progress in tackling corruption since their EU accession. Another potential risk for the future is the demographic decrease and the ageing process of the population. The low birth rate, associated with a total fertility rate fewer than 2 after 1990, caused a decrease in the youth proportion. The 1st of January 2000 was the first time when the young population was exceeded in number and percent by the elderly. The children aged 0-14 years were 3% less than the population of 60 years and over. As in other countries in Europe, this phenomenon will put additional pressure on the Public Pension System and human resources labor after the year 2025. The process of preparation and adoption of the European single currency is one of the most important challenges that Romania has to face in the first decade as a full member of the European Union. This process will test both the political and the administrative capacity, requiring very clear programs for the adaptation of European regulations and directives that will ensure real and nominal convergence. This process will surely prove to be a difficult one and it will bring a high degree of pressure upon the economic system in general. The worldwide financial crisis is making the process of single European currency adoption even more difficult for Romania. Although its effects are not directly felt in Romania, the disorder created within international markets can easily transform the management of economic and currency politics into an insecure and extremely difficult task. With the salary costs levels well beyond the EU average and a good position on the geopolitical map (near the Black Sea and Danube, close to Central Europe countries, part of EU area, full member of NATO security treaty), some areas such as Agriculture and Tourism with current performance way beyond their potential, which will improve in the future, Romania has solid perspectives for development in the future.

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2011

11. BIBLIOGRAPHY 1. STUDIES: 

Human Resources Management in Romania – Virgil Cristian Marinaş

Business in CEE 20 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain – a study by TARGET International Executive Search and Henley Business School

Foreign direct investments attracted by Romania during 2003-2009 – ARIS

Impact of direct foreign investments on Romanian economy – Gianina Dragota, Adriana Horablaga

Organization of the education system in Romania – European Commission Report, 2009

Changes occurring on the labor market in the context of Romania’s EU accession – Tiberiu Cristian Avrămescu, 2009

Demographic changes and the labor market in Romania – Dr. Valentina Vasile

Youth insertion on the Romanian Labor Market – Carmen Ionescu, 2009

IMF Report for Romania – 2008, 2009

External competitiveness of the Romanian regions and counties – Mihaela Nona Chilian

Productivity and the regional employment in services. Econometric estimations for Romania – Doina Jula, Nicoleta Jula

Program for economic growth – Foreign Investors Council, Bucharest, 2010

Forecast on the stability of the Romanian financial system using a stochastic simulation model – Claudiu Tiberiu Albulescu, 2008

IT Sectorial Report – Romanian Government, 2010

2. LEGAL FRAME – Romanian Labour Code (2008)

3. MEDIA: 

Ziarul Financiar – 2008/2011

Business Magazin – 2009, 2010

Bloomberg – 2011

Capital – 2010, 2011

Romanian Business Week – 2008

Biz – 2009

Adevarul – 2011

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OVERVIEW on the ROMANIAN BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT