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The interest of foreign investors in acquiring real estate in Romania has grown significantly since the January 1, 2014 expiration of the country’s prohibition against EU citizens and businesses acquiring agricultural land. Land is available at competitive prices, compared with many other European countries, and other advantages include the facts that Romania holds an important share of the European crop land due to its grain production, has a favorable position within export routes, has high-quality soil, and has a climate suitable for a wide range of agricultural investments.

In The Corner Office we ask Managing Partners across Central and Eastern Europe about their unique roles and responsibilities. The question this time around: What was the most useful or valuable piece of software or new technology your firm has acquired in the past five years?

Why would anyone knowingly become a law firm marketing specialist – a role that is demanding, complicated, challenging, and stressful? To explore this mystery, we went to the source. Accordingly, this time around we asked the law firm marketing specialists of CEE to complete the following question: “I went into Law Firm Marketing/BD as a career because ____________.“

Technology is part of our lives. And technological development leaves its mark on our lifestyle. We saw that in our own homes when we gave up our traditional landlines and used the fixed broadband Internet connection instead, at higher and higher speeds. We see that when exploring the ever-expanding features and options of our mobile handsets. We also see that while viewing high definition programs or when accessing digital interactive services through our TV sets, and when faced with the option of placing calls using traditional services or through new applications. We can see the technological development when rural areas have access to electronic communications and are thus able to reap the benefits of the digital economy.

It has been over a year since the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation became mandatory across Europe, marking a seismic shift in the way that companies collect, process, and handle personal data. Countries across the European Union and beyond have adapted their national laws to meet the requirements of the GDPR – with many introducing local derogations as permitted by the GDPR.

Over 77% of the European Union’s territory is classified as rural (47% is agricultural land and 30% is forest). The numbers are little different in Romania, where around 81% of the territory is rural (approximately 50% is agricultural land and over 31% is forest cover).

The Republic of Moldova has three and a half million people – two and a half million fewer than when it was part of the Soviet Union. The Soviet bar was strictly a criminal/civil/family bar, with lawyers doing international legal work concentrated mainly in Moscow. With the breakup of the Soviet Union, local bars (such as Moldova’s) were forced to develop legal capabilities from scratch to serve the needs of local businesses and foreign investors.

Simona Marin is an English- and New York-qualified partner in CMS’s International Finance team in Bucharest, where she focuses on project finance, real estate finance and other financing structures, both syndicated and bilateral, secured and unsecured. Simona has over ten years’ experience advising on a broad range of high-profile financings and projects throughout Central and Eastern Europe.

The Deal: In April 2019 CEE Legal Matters reported that Clifford Chance Badea had advised Alpha Bank Romania on its EUR 1 billion direct issuance global covered bond programme – the first-ever in Romania. RTPR Allen & Overy advised Barclays Bank PLC as arranger on the programme, which came three years after the country’s covered bond law entered into force.

At the European Community level there have been numerous regulations related to asset freezing and confiscation, the most recent being Directive 2014/42/EU of the European Parliament and of The Council on the freezing and confiscation of instrumentalities and proceeds of crime in the European Union (the “Directive”).

The Romanian personal identification number (“cod numeric personal” in the Romanian language) is a unique and general identifier that is assigned to each individual at birth and appears on most personal documents, including birth certificates and identity cards. The number remains unchanged throughout an individual’s life.

State aid has always been a success story in Romania, with a lot of companies developing medium-sized investment projects based on money coming from Romanian authorities. And the success story continued through 2018 and into 2019. But let’s look at this story from the beginning.

Natural or legal persons directly or indirectly acquiring shares granting more than 33% of the vot-ing rights in a Romanian listed company are required to make a bid as a means of protecting the company’s minority shareholders. Under the European legal framework, the offeror must address that bid to all minority shareholders, offering to purchase all their holdings at an equitable price.

The implementation of the EU’s fourth money laundering directive (2015/849/EU, or MLD4) is a subject of significant interest in Romania, as the process of adopting a new Money Laundering Bill (MLB) in line with the provisions of the MLD4 to replace the current Money Laundering Act is in full progress.

Due to multiple murky provisions in the applicable legislation, the privatization process in Romania has triggered a number of legal battles, varying from the rescission of share sale purchase agreements concluded between the Romanian state (acting through various entities) and investors for the investors’ failure to comply with investment obligations to the recognition or protection of certain rights arising from the privatization itself.

On April 1, 2019, a team led by Francisc and Carmen Peli left Romania’s highly-ranked and widely-respected PeliFilip, which the Pelis had co-founded in 2008, to start PeliPartners.  We reached out to Francisc Peli to learn more about the reasons for the big change and his plans for the new firm.

Romanian Knowledge Partner

Țuca Zbârcea & Asociații is a full-service independent law firm, employing cross-disciplinary teams of lawyers, insolvency practitioners, tax consultants, IP counsellors, economists and staff members. It also operates a secondary law office in Cluj-Napoca (Romania), and has a ‘best-friend’ agreement with a leading law firm in the Republic of Moldova. In addition, thanks to the firm’s dedicated Foreign Desks, the team provides the full range of services to international investors seeking to gain a foothold or expand their existing operations in Romania. Since 2019, the firm and its tax arm are collaborating with Andersen Global in Romania.

Țuca Zbârcea & Asociaţii is providing legal services in every aspect of business, covering all major areas of practice: corporate and M&A; litigation and international arbitration; corporate tax; public procurement; TMT; employment; insurance; banking and finance; capital markets; competition; healthcare and pharmaceutical; energy and natural resources; environmental; intellectual property; real estate; regulatory legal services.

Țuca Zbârcea & Asociaţii is a First-Tier law firm in all international legal directories and a multiple award-winning law firm both locally and internationally. It received the CEE Deal of the Year Award (DOTY Awards 2021) and the Law Firm of the Year Award: Romania (IFLR Europe Awards 2021). 

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