Ceausescu’s legacy: Romania has to recover loans of USD 776 million from Iraq, Libya, North Korea and third world countries, granted during the Communist regime

Sorin Melenciuc 30/08/2018 | 13:05

Iraq, Libya, North Korea and eight African countries owe to Romania USD 775.8 million from loans granted under Ceausescu’s reign, until 1989, but Bucharest struggles to recover the money due to low solvency of its foreign debtors, according to the Finance Ministry data.

At the end of 2017, Iraq was the biggest debtor, owing USD 520.4 million to Romania, followed by Sudan (USD 169.9 million), Libya (USD 45.6 million), Nigeria (USD 12.6 million), Mozambique (USD 11.2 million), Central African Republic (USD 10.7 million), the Republic of Guinea (USD 2.3 million), Somalia (USD 2.5 million), North Korea (USD 546,953), Tanzania (USD 99,000), and DR Congo / ex-Zaire (USD 88,326).

However, Romania has managed to recover close to USD 93 million between end-June 2016, when the previous report was released, and end-2017.

At mid-2016, these countries owed to Romania USD 868.9 million.

From all foreign debtors, Romania currently has debt payment accords with five countries: Iraq, North Korea, Mozambique, DR Congo, and the Republic of Guinea.

Romania has still no accord in place with Sudan, Libya, Nigeria, Central African Republic, Somalia, and Tanzania.

Romania also has to recover a huge amount from Cuba, amounting 1.49 billion “transferable rubles”, a former account currency used during the Soviet reign in trade between the USSR and its satellite countries like Romania.

Bucharest has currently no debt accord with Cuba.

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