Gov’t decides to cut expenditures on protocol events, foreign visits in public institutions

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Expenditures on protocol events and visits abroad of the central and local public institutions will be slashed in the second half of this year, the Government decided on Wednesday through an Emergency Ordinance.

‘We are talking about those expenditures we have criticized as Opposition parties and that we do not want to maintain now as a ruling coalition,’ Prime Minister Victor Ponta said.

The draft normative act initiated by the Finance Ministry aims to reduce by 30 percent the spending on protocol events and foreign visits in the second half of 2012 compared to the expenditures in question made in the same period of 2011.

According to the draft, the abovementioned provision does not include the spending on protocol events and foreign visits related to the projects funded through non-refundable foreign funds, the expenditures on visits abroad regarding the participation of the armed forces in the missions established in Art. 2, Law No. 121/2011 on the Armed Forces’ participation in missions and operations outside Romania’s territory, as well as the spending on the foreign visits paid by policemen and public servants, with a special status in the system of the penitentiary administration, who carry out missions within the peacekeeping forces.

The ministers, the ministers delegate, the secretary general of the Government, the state secretaries, the undersecretaries of state, the mayors, the vice mayors, the presidents and vice presidents of the county councils, the local councillors and the senior public servants as well can be accompanied by maximum two people during their visits abroad.

As regards the visits abroad, the delegations of the ministries, of the General Secretariat of the Gov’t, of the public institutions under the authority/coordination of the Gov’t or the ministries, of the public bodies and authorities of the local public administration can be made up of maximum 2 persons.

Exceptions will be enforced as regards the visits to the European Union and NATO bodies, the participation of the armed forces personnel in missions, exercises, training, ceremonies and other activities organized outside Romania, the travels to meetings of cross-border cooperation, the journeys of policemen and public servants, with a special status in the system of the penitentiary administration, who carry out missions within the peacekeeping forces, as well as the travels related to projects funded through non-refundable foreign funds.

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