For a state struggling to pay the pensions and salaries of its civil servants, Romania looks as if it’s living through an absurd drama. It has funds for various investments but is unable to make use of them. It must spend no less than €15 million per day until 2015 in order to absorb the total funds allocated by the EU for the budgetary exercise of 2007-2013, and judging by the fact that the present absorption rate is €1.13 million per day, under the “no policy action scenario,” the prospect of full absorption seems completely unrealistic.
In fact, after four years of EU membership, Romania has spent only 8.6% of the total allotted funds for the 2007-2013 budgetary cycle. Nor is Romania’s position encouraging from an international perspective, for, together with Bulgaria, our country sits at the very bottom of the new member state ranking. The average absorption rate of the other EU-8 countries for the same period is around 22%.
Based on the most recently released data, Romania could lose money in the fields of transport, administrative capacity and technical assistance. However, an internal comparison of the implementation of the seven Operational Programs (OP’s) throws a different light on the Romanian case, although with variable results.