3.3.2 South-East Region

Image 3.18:
Romania’s Development Region South-East – Sud-Est

Regiunea Sud-Est - The Development Region South-East in Romania

Source: ro.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imagine:SE_dr_ro.png

The Development Region South-East in Romania is host to 2.846 million people (13.16 % of total population) containing the six counties Brăila, Buzău, Constanța, Galați, Tulcea and Vrancea. These represent about 15 % of the total territory in Romania. Some 11.48 % of the GDP of Romania stem from this the South East (INS 2008, own calculations for 2005). In 2006 the South-East GDP per capita reached 3,935 € and was about 12.5 % lower than the national average.[1] Like the North-East, this region is subject to strong regional disparities: Brăila, Buzău, Galați, Tulcea and especially Vrancea perform rather low, the local GDP per capita of Constanța was with 5,434 € by 38 % higher than the national average and about 80 % higher than the local per capita GDP of Vrancea. CNP projects by 2010 a growth potential of regional GDP of 74 % (8,800 €) and a doubling of local GDP for Constanța (9,183 €).

The disparities and development gaps between the counties of the region are further reflected by the distribution of regional top ranked firms by NewsIn 2008. While 22 of 30 top rated enterprises are located either in Constanța (12) or in Galați (10) the other eight firms are settled in Tulcea and Buzău. Neither Brăila, nor Vrancea succeeded in leading one of their firms in the top of the South-East (cf. NewsIn 2008: 77). Indeed, after some hard years of industrial restructuration the situation stabilized in the last years. Unemployment rates are rather low. On the aggregate level the South-East Region of Romania faced some 4.4 % of unemployment in 2007, ranging from 3.5 % in Constanța to 5.5 % in Buzău (INS 2008) on county-level. Anyhow, in smaller cities with poor infrastructure unemployment might be higher.

The economic profile of Romania’s South-East region is diversified, though mainly characterized by services such as tourism at the Black Sea and transports; the latter part of the region profits from various maritime and fluvial (Danube) transportation links.

„Industria, susținută de combinatul siderurgic Sidex Galați, rafinăria Petromidia, centrala nucleară de la Cernavodă, șantierele navale din Brăila, Galați, Tulcea, Constanța și Mangalia și de fabricile de celuloză și hârtie Celhart Donaris din Brăila, creează mai puțin de un sfert (22 %) din produsul intern brut regional”(NewsIn 2008: 19).[2]

Romania’s South-East Region succeeded in attracting the second highest share of total Romanian FDI-inflows (7.7 % – 2.653 billions of Euros, 935 € per capita; cf. ADRC 2008), with Constanța as main destination (38 % of regional FDI-inflows). The good performance of the region and especially Constanța is attributed to an attractive infrastructure, the maritime and fluvial links to European and Asian markets, a significant touristic potential, the diversified industry and cheap energy from the nuclear power station at Cernavodă. According to the prominent role of FDI in the region some 30.8 % of regional GDP where exported in 2006. This means a share of 13.3 % of total Romanian exports. Compared to exports imports were rather low (9.4 % of total Romanian imports) and as a result the regions contribution to Romania’s trade deficit amounted just to a mere 2.5 % in 2006.

Academic Research paper and Study of the Economy of Romania and Romanian Business

The South-East regions administration, scored in Buzău, Constanța and Focșani (Municipality of Vrancea), achieved the third rank in the latest NewsIn monitoring report, reaching a score of 14.6 of 20 possible. Actually, Constanța performed best on the regional level (18), followed by Buzău (17). The average score was heavily decreased by Focșani, which gained just 8.5 points.


[1] Again, if not stated otherwise, all information and data for 2006 are taken from NewsIn 2008. This applies also to the subsequent chapters.

[2] The industry, backed by the Sidex Galati iron plant, the Petromidia refinery, the nuclear power station at Cernavodă, the naval ship yards (Brăila, Galați, Tulcea, Constanța, Mangalia) and the cellulose and paper factory Celhart Donaris-Brăila contributed less than a quarter (22 %) to the region’s GDP [NewsIn 2008: 172, SH].