Location Romania Romania

“The Maastricht Treaty has sent Romania back to the Middle Ages”

Romania and Bulgaria were integrated into the European Union over ten years ago, on the 1st of January 2007. Seventeen labour activists in Romania, particularly trade union leaders in the mining and energy sectors, draw up the balance sheet of these ten years. International Workers Committee quotes their statement:

“In Romania, the Maastricht Treaty has been the main cause of the demolition of the country. For Romania to be a member of the European Union, the conditions became more and more drastic and absurd. After that, enslaving economic demands were imposed: the country’s main finance stream – the banks and the insurance companies – were sold to Austrian and German companies. Then came the obligation to sell the wealth of Romanian oil and gas, whose deposits are amongst the richest in Europe, to companies that were ten times smaller that the Romanian companies: the former national oil and gas company was a giant compared to OMV, the Austrian company that bought it – and that had to take out an enormous loan to do so…”

Privatisations and the selling off of companies…

“Almost all the steel and metal companies were closed, one after the other, and there are only a few blast furnaces left, managed by ArcelorMittal, the Galati group being sold for practically nothing, a condition for Romania’s becoming a member of the European Union. Great Britain exerted heavy pressure in favour of the Indian Mittal, darling of the British prime minister of the time.

“The Maastricht Treaty has strangled the economic growth of Romania: a limit of 3% was imposed on the deficit, and Romanians were threatened with being ejected from the planet Earth and the  whole solar system if their deficit got close to that limit! (…)

“The dizzying increase in unemployment has reached a level never before known up to now, not even during World War II. We have got to a situation where the number of retired people is 10% more than the number of employed. (…) ”

Four million Romanians forced to emigrate

“At the present time, over four million Romanians are officially emigrant workers in European countries, where many of them do not find work suited to their qualifications and professional experience, without mentioning the working conditions (sometimes close to slave labour) and their salary, when they get one. “The collapse of employment was immediately followed by the collapse of the healthcare system, the lack of means leading to the reappearance of illnesses that had long since been eradicated. Nor could education escape this disaster unharmed.

The lack of funds has drastically reduced the number of children who can access middle school, especially in the rural areas, and education has become a problem for more than half of the families.”

One hundred billion euros of capital flight

“The capitalism that has descended upon Romania has maimed and defaced it, and the vultures, the looters of our beautiful and rich country, are diverting over 100 billion euros in untaxed profits annually. What they leave behind them is wasteland, where before there had been age-old forests, and ruins where once there had been factories and plants.

“So we unreservedly join the initiative that you have taken, for the free union of the peoples and workers of Europe, without borders or restrictions, for a Europe of workers’ rights and democracy, for a break with the Maastricht Treaty and the dictatorship of the ECB!”

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