The post-pandemic economic crisis, an endemic recovery process and a catatonic year

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Bogdan Tudorache

Following the 2008 crisis, global economies have recovered gradually but differently, with the most affected being the emerging economies. Romania suffered enormously, as it had the highest growth chart in the region before the crisis, but the dependence of the consumer economy, sales and mostly imports was seen in the collapse of markets, blocking of financing and the disappearance of growth segments, especially in the real estate field.

The crisis of 2008 also affected local production, largely based on lohn of all kinds – imports of parts and assembly, followed by re-export of subassemblies or finished products.

Currently, however, the decrease in sales within Romania’s largest economic partner, the European Union, will not last very long and will only temporarily affect production on the so-called lohn of all kinds.

Instead, the same patterns of the 2008 crisis reappear in the market: financial blockages and unjustified delays in payments between companies, lack of budgets, wage cuts, lay-offs, followed by smaller wage re-employments and staff fluctuations.

In this context, the “big” energy industry should not suffer for more than a few months, the return in L or V shape pressing more on small and medium enterprises, on service providers and this including the unjustified delay of some works.

Western economies will obviously recover faster, using more easily, thanks to know-how, the funds made available by the Union. Instead, economies with systemic bureaucracies and a management with stuttering decisions, lacking vision and maybe even political support in an election year, such as Romania, will suffer more – hence the recovery in an L shape until the end of the year.

Let’s look, for example, at the decisions taken by the responsible companies, as the time for the liberalization of the gas market approaches. We will quote a senior official of a large company who says today that “we will wait to see what happens in the market” – in the context in which the company is one of the market makers.

Romania proves, once again, that it needs leaders well trained in management positions, namely trained in management, not only in the technical field in which it operates. Otherwise, we will delay everything, unjustifiably, any work, any new order, any auction, any payment order.

Looking, however, at the “good side” of things… the election year is also here, with chronic indecisions at the legislative level, opposing opinions and behind-the-scenes fights – using the Romanian recipe of the last 30 years (already the 20 years that Brucan mentioned reveals a perfectly repeatable cycle). That will make the recovery even harder, turning 2020 into a catatonic year, most likely marked towards the end by hyperinflation (losses must be recovered through price increases, right?), a record unemployment of the last decade (including the return of workers from abroad) and an endemic indecision, characteristic of very weak managers of companies and the economy, especially under electoral pressures.

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