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Romania’s Liberals and Social Democrats pledge to have new cabinet by Nov. 25


Romania‘s ruling Liberals and their former rivals, the Social Democrats will have a coalition government installed within a week, party leaders said on Thursday, even though they have yet to agree on key appointments, according to Reuters.

Earlier this week, the two parties agreed to rotate prime ministers every six months until a 2024 general election.  But on Thursday they had yet to decide which party would go first.

Earlier in the day, the Liberals decided to support interim defence minister and retired army general Nicolae Ciuca as their proposed prime minister instead of party leader Florin Cîțu, eliminating a stumbling block in the negotiations.

The Social Democrats (PSD) repeatedly said they would not back a government led by Cîțu, whose cabinet failed a no-confidence vote in parliament on October 5.

Ciuca said the two parties and their junior partner UDMR will decide on Friday who gets the first rotation. PSD leader Marcel Ciolacu said a new cabinet will be approved by November 25.

Ciolacu also said the party with the first prime minister cannot also hold the finance portfolio. The number of ministries allotted to each party will be determined by parliament seats, which favours PSD, the biggest party in the legislature.

But the parties, which were bitter foes in a 2020 general election, had yet to agree on key policy items including taxation, judicial reforms and the scope of wage, pension and child benefit hikes.