Romania’s economy minister takes command of the Defense Ministry

Romania’s ruling Social Democratic Party (PSD) has proposed the current economy minister Mihai Fifor to be the country’s new minister of defense.

PSD had to name a new defense minister after Adrian Tutuianu resigned last week amid a scandal on militaries’ wages.

The new defense minister has to coordinate the biggest program for endowing and modernizing Romania’s armed forces in years. Among the most important matters on his agenda will be the acquisition of Patriot and Himars missile systems from the US, the purchase of new multi-role and attack helicopters, the purchase of new fighter jets and corvettes.

Romania has committed to spending 2% of its GDP on defense every year and its military equipment acquisitions are estimated at billions of euro in the following years.

Mihai Fifor has no experience in the defense sector or in economics. He studied literature in university. However, PSD leader Liviu Dragnea said that Fifor has worked closely with the former defense minister in the last two months on finding ways to develop Romania’s defense industry.

Fifor has been Romania’s economy minister since June. His place will now be taken by PSD MP Gheorghe Simon.

According to Simon’s CV posted on the Chamber of Deputies’ website, the proposed economy minister was born in 1961 in Viseu de Sus town in Maramures county. He was appointed deputy president of PSD Maramures organization in 2000 and has a degree in engineering.

President Klaus Iohannis also signed on Tuesday the decrees appointing the new ministers. The sworn in ceremony was scheduled for later the same day, at 15:00.

Irina Marica, [email protected]

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