No further delay after April 1 in introducing the new tax on fuel

In the attempt to eventually put an end to the dispute sparked following the introduction of the 7 eurocents excise duty on fuel, the Government has found the solution so as to implement that measure and at the same time, to get signed the Memorandum with the International Monetary Fund by the President.

Thus, according to Prime Minister Victor Ponta, the measure in question will come into force as from April 1, 2014, without exception, despite there has been discussed the possibility of a further postponement for diesel fuel. However, although representing one of the main provisions on the basis of which the Memorandum was concluded, it will not be stipulated any longer into the complementary letter of intent which Traian Basescu is expected to sign. That, in order to avoid a similar situation as the one faced last December when the President refused to approve the Memorandum by signing the letter, and that in order for the arrangement with the foreign financiers eventually becomes effective.

Basescu consistently disputed the measure undertaken by the Government, yet according to Ponta, he will put his signature on those documents provided the excise duty will not be displayed.

‘I believe that eventually, the President, beyond the political, politicizing and election game, will understand that Romania’s interest is to have an operative agreement, both with the European Commission and with the International Monetary Fund.(...) I mean, the President knows that it is a tax, but he does not want to see it  when he signs (the letter of intent).’ , Ponta said during the press conference subsequent to his meeting with the IMF delegation, after confirming that the excise duty on fuel will be effective starting April 1.

The IMF Mission started a visit in Bucharest on January 21 meant to complete the first and second assessment of the precautionary arrangement Romania has with the Fund. IMF’s delegates had several meetings with the Government, the President and other regulatory authorities concerned, one of the main issues discussed being the argued excise duty on fuel whose introduction represents one of the compulsory conditions supporting the agreement. 
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