Romania: Country and Foreign Investment
Geography, Climate, Population and Culture
Romania as a united entity (comprising the principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia) formed in the late 1850s, emerging from Ottoman rule, and taking its current name shortly thereafter. Its independence was recognised in 1878 by the Treaty of Berlin.
In the First World War, Romania joined the Allied Powers, gaining control of Transylvania afterwards (although disputes over this with Hungary rumbled on until the Second World War, when the territory was recognised as fully belonging to Romania).
Fighting, initially, on the side of the Axis powers in the Second World War, and unrecognised in the Treaty of Paris by the Allies after the war, Romania – occupied by the Soviet Union during and after the war – found itself increasingly under Communist influence, leading to the formation of the ‘People’s Republic of Romania’, and the abdication of the king.
Assuming power in 1965, Nicolae Ceausescu oversaw decades of oppression and increasing poverty, and he was overthrown and executed in 1989. The influence of Communism continued to dominate in the country until the mid-1990s, although some moves were made towards freeing the market. Since 1996, Romania has continued to increase its ties with Western Europe, and to move towards free market policies. It joined NATO in 2004, and the European Union in 2007.
Romania has a land area of 238,391 sq km, and is situated in South Eastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Bulgaria and Ukraine. Borders also exist between Romania and Hungary, Moldova and Serbia. Land use is divided, approximately, into arable land: 39.49%, permanent crops: 1.92%, and other: 58.59%, and earthquakes and landslides are not unusual, particularly in the south of the country.
The climate is temperate, and natural resources include natural gas, coal, petroleum, hydropower, timber, iron ore, salt, arable land.
The population of Romania was estimated, in July 2012, at 21,848,504.