New Romanian gov’t.
months before the UK is due to trigger its departure negotiations. Ivan Rogers, a highly regarded diplomat who had been due to end his four-year stint in October, stepped down as London prepares to invoke Article 50, which starts a two-year countdown to Britain leaving the EU. Rogers came under fire last month for saying it could take 10 years for Britain to conclude a trade deal with the EU. The government insisted, though, that he was only reporting back what was being said in European capitals. “Sir Ivan Rogers has resigned a few months early as UK permanent representative to the European Union,” a British government spokeswoman said. “Sir Ivan has taken this decision now to enable a successor to be appointed before the UK invokes Article 50 by the end of March. We are grateful for his work and commitment over
Romania’s ruling Social Democrat Party (PSD), winner of a December 11 parliamentary election, named government ministers yesterday, including veteran lawmaker Viorel Stefan for the Finance Ministry portfolio. The lineup will be rubber-stamped in a vote today in Parliament, where the PSD and its junior coalition party ALDE have an overall majority. ALDE has four portfolios, including energy. Would-be finance minister Stefan, 62, has a PhD in economics and has been the head of the Parliament’s lower house budget and finance committee for years.