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The World Bank publishes a report based on the situation of the Romanian Roma and the costs of their exclusion [editar]

07/04/2014
FSG International

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The World Bank publishes a report based on the situation of the Romanian Roma and the costs of their exclusionThis report has been financed through the European Union (EU) structural funds in order to assist the Government of Romania develop national policies and identify cost-effective programs for the inclusion of Roma.

The World Bank has published a new report (“The Diagnostics and Policy Advice for Supporting Roma Inclusion in Romania”) that examines the social and economic barriers most Roma in Romania face throughout their entire lives. It presents as well the socioeconomic cost associated to this situation, as it did in 2010 (“Roma Inclusion: An Economic Opportunity for Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania and Serbia”)

The socioeconomic exclusion of the Romanian Roma is the result of multiple interacting factors perpetuated across generations. In an effort to streamline policy recommendations and to highlight the most promising areas of intervention, the report focuses on three key dimensions of exclusion: skills development (chiefly through early childhood development and basic education), earning opportunities for Roma families, and basic services and living conditions. These three dimensions underlie the challenge of achieving equal opportunities for the Roma, both for the current generation and the next generation.

Roma inclusion is not only a moral imperative, but also smart economics for Romania, as the report assesses. With an ageing population, pension and health care costs are bound to increase in the near future. Equal labor market opportunities could enable faster productivity growth and could contribute fiscal benefits through increased revenue from taxes and lower social assistance spending. According to a World Bank estimate based on 2008 data, the inclusion could result in economic benefits ranging between €887 million and €2.9 billion annually, and fiscal benefits ranging between €202 million and €675 million annually. While these numbers are based on overly simplified assumptions about adjustments in the economy and the labor market, they illustrate the economic potential of Roma inclusion.

Reducing poverty, promoting labor market inclusion as well as education for Roma are crucial steps towards achieving Romania’s Europe 2020 Strategy.

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