Romania’s recovery package (the National Plan for Recovery and Resilience) was presented in its first version in late 2020. Following a call to rewrite the plan, in particular concerning the lack of focus on the green transition and digitalization, the second version of the Plan was published in March 2021. The public debate around the Plan, launched on March 19th, has been scarce.
Overall, the total funding allocated by the EU to Romania’s Recovery and Resilience Plan was reduced to €29.2 bn (or 13% of domestic GDP), after the recalculation of the Romanian GDP for 2020 compared to the European average. According to the new RRP, the Government requests an allocation of €41.14bn - almost €11bn more than the initial allocation. Overall, Romania’s recovery measures make a positive contribution to the green transition, although the ultimate contribution of the recovery measures cannot yet be fully assessed as public versions of the RRP lack details on the design of specific recovery measures beyond the overarching elements of the plan.
Green Spending Share
We find that Romanian draft recovery plan (RRP) achieves a green spending share of 24%, below the EU’s 37% benchmark. In contrast, 12.8% (€5.1bn) of all measures have a negative impact. Furthermore, we find that 35% (€13bn) may have a positive or negative impact on the green transition depending on the implementation of the relevant measures, illustrating the importance of further scrutiny during the further planning, review and implementation of the recovery measures.
Our calculation of the green spending share aims to mirror the approach used for the official assessment of national recovery plans (find more information here).
This report was written by Luciana Miu (EPG) and Magdolna Prantner (Wuppertal Institute). We are grateful to Mihnea Catuti and Constantin Postoiu (both EPG) and Felix Heilmann (E3G) for providing valuable inputs.
The Plan’s “Renovation Wave” element is well-tailored to the reality of Romania’s built environment impact. Given the substantial proportion of historical buildings classified as cultural landmarks, this element includes specific measures for upskilling contractors for historical building renovations and reusing historical building construction materials.
The Plan’s “Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency” component does not set specific targets, in particular milestones for coal phase-out, or specify how they will be enshrined into relevant climate law. More detail is required to robustly link the proposed measures to Romania’s National Integrated Plan for Energy and Climate Change, in particular its proposed decarbonization plans for large coal producers.
One of the Plan’s proposed measures for improving cycling will provide funding fora mature community-led project. Initiated in 2018, its mission is to build 1,000 km of paths suitable for walking, cycling or horse-riding, crossing Transylvania. To date, 685 km have been built using private funding.