Romanian Minister of Finance Ionut Popescu stated to Mediafax that talks with IMF (the International Monetary Fund) on the budget deficit rate in 2005 focussed on a rate of 0,7%-0, 75% of PIB (the raw internal product) and that the exact rate would be set in mid June, when Bucharest would welcome IMF delegation. These days the Romanian minister is attending the yearly reunion of BERD (the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) in Belgrade. Popescu has announced that it is most likely that budget correction should get consent after the visits of the IMF experts, which is in late June. Even if he thinks IMF claims are sometimes too strict, Popescu has agreed to cautious fiscal policy, whose main target is support inflation decrease. Popescu stated: "To be honest, if it hadn't been for IMF, Romania would have gone through many drawbacks in the last 15 years. May be IMF experts are too cautious, but caution must continue to be our attitude". Right now projected corrections refer to a 5,8% increase of PIB and average exchange rate of 37,500 ROL/ 1 Euro.
Funds for privatization might be used for restructuring
Both the finance minister and Dragos Neacsu, state secretary in the Ministry of Finance, have announced that they are trying to get IMF agree to register income from privatization in a special fund for restructuring programs. This was expenses from funds used in the process of privatization would no longer contribute to budget deficit raise. Ionut Popescu says he is optimistic and thinks he will persuade IMF experts to take into account a higher rate of budget income, which is a level higher than IMF's initial estimation. He has explained that after the first three months in 2005 the consolidated budget of 0,13%of BIP has increased and in April cashing has been higher than expected. (A.G.C.)