The policy of provisional status, promoted by the Government in the management of the state-owned companies, places serious obstacles to Romania’s pathway towards a member country of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
The ability of a candidate country to cope with the OECD’s stringent requirements is assessed, among others, based on the progress registered in implementing the principles from the Guidelines on Corporate Governance of State-Owned Enterprises, developed by the organization, both for its members and for candidates.
But the Romanian Government lacks precisely in the corporate governance field, where it made substantial steps back in the last year, through the policy of imposing members with provisional four-month mandates (sometimes prolonged) in the management of the state-owned companies.
Instead of supporting the best corporate governance practices, the policy of provisional status proved to be a method, the so-called „Four Months Method.”
Romania is still waiting for the invitation letter to join, to start talks for establishing a roadmap with this view.
„The OECD accession process also involves the development of sectoral studies/ analysis aimed at assessing Romania’s readiness and ability to implement OECD legal instruments as well as comparing Romania’s policies and practices with the OECD best practices and policies” , said Sorana Baciu, President of the Association of Independent Administrators (AAI), for cursdeguvernare.ro.
Therefore, the corporate governance principles for state-owned companies („OECD Guidelines on Corporate Governance of State-Owned Enterprises”) represent an objective that an OECD member must meet.
Other examples of such most important tools are:
- a) the Anti-Bribery Convention;
- b) the codes for the liberalization of capital movements.
„All countries that have been invited by the OECD to become a member are going through a step-by-step accession process with concrete measures to ensure that the country complies with the good practices to which the OECD member countries are aligned,” says Sorana Baciu.
The OECD accession „is an important objective of Romania’s foreign policy, reconfirmed by all governments so far,” said the expert, who was State Secretary for coordinating the relations with the OECD and the policies for developing the domestic capital, within the Chancellery of Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos.
In 2016, the Romanian Government sent again a letter to the OECD expressing its intention to adhere to the corporate governance code, and a study on the stage of the implementation of these principles in Romania was to be carried out in 2017, along with the experts of the organization.
Romania had previously another two unsuccessful attempts to join the OECD, in 2004 and 2012.