Moving to Romania

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Bucharest_parliament_buildingsExpats moving to Romania will find it both challenging and rewarding. For many people, Romania may conjure thoughts of fortune-telling Gypsies, Dracula and Transylvania; however, Romania has far more to offer, and is eager to make its mark both as an international tourist destination, and a gateway to business in Eastern Europe. Romania is a very traditional country, but its people are eager to engage with the fast-globalising world and all it has to offer. 
Situated in the southern part of Eastern Europe, along the north-western shores of the Black Sea, Romania shares borders with the Ukraine and Moldova to the east, Hungary to the north, Serbia to the west, and Bulgaria is its southern neighbour. Romania’s diverse geography ranges from pristine beaches along the Black Sea to the picturesque Carpathian Mountains. Rolling hills give way to rustic villages and quaint farmlands, usually presided over by a towering gothic castle.
Romania’s capital, Bucharest, stands on the banks of the Dambovita River. Bucharest was severely neglected and left to ruin under the communist government and the despotic rule of Nicolae Ceausescu. However, today Bucharest is finding its feet. It is a city in the process of reinventing itself, damaged and neglected buildings are being revamped and renovated, new restaurants and nightlife spots are opening throughout the city, and Bucharest is fast making its mark as an industrial centre in Eastern Europe. 
Bucharest has an extensive selection of business facilities, such as conference centres, educational institutions, shopping malls, recreational parks and cultural venues. It has a well-developed public transport network and the metropolitan area accounts for 25 percent of Romania’s industrial production and almost 15 percent of the country’s GDP. Bucharest is home to nearly 200 000 firms and businesses. Expats looking to relocate to Bucharest should look for positions in the building and construction sectors, as well as in the engineering, IT, communications and software development fields. With a selection of opportunities and extensive cultural and historical sites, Bucharest and Romania offer expats a welcome change from the quintessential expat destinations.
draculas_castle_romaniaRomania has an extensive transport network, with road, rail, air and water transportation available. The country is investing large amounts of money into upgrading and extending the road network throughout the country. Bucharest has an extensive metro system and is a key transport hub for Eastern Europe. While Romania does offer residents free public health and emergency care, most expats choose to use their choice of one of the private healthcare facilities in the country.

Romania has an extensive list of national and international banks operating in the country, offering all the services you would expect in today’s fast-paced business environment. With a flat tax-rate of 16 percent for both corporate and personal income, Romania saw comprehensive growth in the private sector during the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Expats moving to Romania will need to obtain a work permit. As with many ex-communist countries, the process does involve a certain amount of bureaucracy. EU citizens will find it easier than those moving from other parts of the world. 
Seasoned expats will know that one of largest culture shocks tends to be language difference. Romania’s official language is Romanian. There are also a number of minority languages, such as German, Hungarian and Vlaxi Romani, spoken by a small proportion of the population. English is spoken in the larger cities, such as Bucharest, Constanta and Brasov, as well as areas frequented by tourists. For expats travelling with children, there are a number of international schools.
Expats moving to Romania are treading off the beaten track when it comes to worldwide expat destinations. But, as an EU member state, Romania welcomes business and trade, and is eager to make its mark on the business world. Romania offers expats a range of outdoor destinations to explore, interesting cuisine, fantastic cultural sights and opportunities, and a jumping-off point from which expats can explore the meeting-point between Eastern and Western cultures. 

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