The estimated Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rose by 7.5 percent in the first three months of the year, which is the biggest first-quarter leap the economy has made since 1990, Ziarul Financiar cites the country's economy and finance minister Varujan Vosganian.
According to the estimates presented by the minister, services witnessed a 6.7 percent increase and the construction sector went up by 32 percent. Vosganian said that the economy's good performance occurred in the wake of a 2 percent decline in the consumption of primary energy sources.
At the same time, the minister highlighted the positive performance of the foreign balance, after exports increased by 13.5 percent, and left imports behind, which advanced by 12.3 percent.
"We hope to see the current account deficit as a percentage of GDP lower than the figure in 2007. We have begun the process that aims to bring the current account deficit down to a single digit by 2010," Vosganian stated.
In addition, he estimated foreign investments could reach 7.5-8 billion euros this year.
Vosganian also said that the economic growth registered was apparent in living standards, and explained that the Gross Domestic Product per capita had reached 41 percent of the European Union average in terms of purchasing power parity.
"If this fiscal policy and the other economic policies continue, then Romania could exceed half of the EU's GDP calculated by purchasing power parity by 2013," Vosganian explained.
The minister added that the general consolidated budget had posted a 617 million-euro surplus four months into the year, which accounted for 0.14 percent of GDP. Total revenues of the general consolidated budget amounted to 62.15 billion RON, which accounted for 14.1 percent of GDP, compared with 38.3 billion RON from January through April 2007, when they accounted for 9.8 percent of GDP.
Expenses of the general consolidated budget totalled 61.5 billion RON.
The data of the Economy and Finance Ministry reveal that the general consolidated budget posted a slight surplus in the first three months, 79.2 million RON (21.46 million euros), which accounted for 0.02 percent of the Gross Domestic Product.
In the first week of March, the Government approved the first budget adjustment this year, whereby the deficit of the general consolidated budget scheduled for 2008 was lowered from 2.75 percent of GDP to 2.3 percent of GDP.
According to the preliminary data about GDP and budget execution, the general consolidated budget registered a deficit of 2.33 percent of GDP last year, according to the Romanian computation method, and a deficit of 2.53 percent, according to the ESA 95 rules.
The government intends to adjust the public and social security budgets during the parliamentary summer holiday, which is scheduled between July 1 and September 1.