country profile - ROMANIA
Background: The principalities of Wallachia and Moldavia - for centuries under the suzerainty of the Turkish Ottoman Empire - secured their autonomy in 1856; they united in 1859 and a few years later adopted the new name of Romania. The country gained recognition of its independence in 1878. It joined the Allied Powers in World War I and acquired new territories - most notably Transylvania - following the conflict. In 1940, Romania allied with the Axis powers and participated in the 1941 German invasion of the USSR. Three years later, overrun by the Soviets, Romania signed an armistice. The post-war Soviet occupation led to the formation of a Communist "people's republic" in 1947 and the abdication of the king. The decades-long rule of dictator Nicolae CEAUSESCU, who took power in 1965, and his Securitate police state became increasingly oppressive and draconian through the 1980s. CEAUSESCU was overthrown and executed in late 1989. Former Communists dominated the government until 1996 when they were swept from power. Romania joined NATO in 2004 and the EU in 2007.
geography  
Location: Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Bulgaria and Ukraine
Area: total: 238,391 sq km
land: 229,891 sq km
water: 8,500 sq km
Land boundaries: total: 2,508 km
border countries: Bulgaria 608 km, Hungary 443 km, Moldova 450 km, Serbia 476 km, Ukraine (north) 362 km, Ukraine (east) 169 km
Coastline: 225 km
Climate: temperate; cold, cloudy winters with frequent snow and fog; sunny summers with frequent showers and thunderstorms
Natural resources: petroleum (reserves declining), timber, natural gas, coal, iron ore, salt, arable land, hydropower
people  
Population: 21,666,350 (July 2015 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 14.49% (male 1,612,090/female 1,526,432)
15-24 years: 10.94% (male 1,215,309/female 1,154,618)
25-54 years: 45.92% (male 5,030,926/female 4,919,140)
55-64 years: 12.92% (male 1,308,475/female 1,491,858)
65 years and over: 15.73% (male 1,376,634/female 2,030,868) (2015 est.)
Median age: total: 40.2 years
male: 38.8 years
female: 41.7 years (2015 est.)
Population growth rate: -0.3% (2015 est.)
Birth rate: 9.14 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Death rate: 11.9 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Net migration rate -0.24 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2015 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.68 male(s)/female
total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2015 est.)
Nationality: noun: Romanian(s)
adjective: Romanian
Ethnic groups: Romanian 83.4%, Hungarian 6.1%, Roma 3.1%, Ukrainian 0.3%, German 0.2%, other 0.7%, unspecified 6.1% (2011 est.)
Religions: Eastern Orthodox (including all sub-denominations) 81.9%, Protestant (various denominations including Reformed and Pentecostal) 6.4%, Roman Catholic 4.3%, other (includes Muslim) 0.9%, none or atheist 0.2%, unspecified 6.3% (2011 est.)
Languages: Romanian (official) 85.4%, Hungarian 6.3%, Romany (Gypsy) 1.2%, other 1%, unspecified 6.1% (2011 est.)
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 98.8%
male: 99.1%
female: 98.5% (2015 est.)
government  
Country name: conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Romania
local long form: none
local short form: Romania
Government type: republic
Capital: name: Bucharest
geographic coordinates: 44 26 N, 26 06 E
time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions: 41 counties (judete, singular - judet) and 1 municipality* (municipiu); Alba, Arad, Arges, Bacau, Bihor, Bistrita-Nasaud, Botosani, Braila, Brasov, Bucuresti (Bucharest)*, Buzau, Calarasi, Caras-Severin, Cluj, Constanta, Covasna, Dimbovita, Dolj, Galati, Gorj, Giurgiu, Harghita, Hunedoara, Ialomita, Iasi, Ilfov, Maramures, Mehedinti, Mures, Neamt, Olt, Prahova, Salaj, Satu Mare, Sibiu, Suceava, Teleorman, Timis, Tulcea, Vaslui, Vilcea, Vrancea
Independence: 9 May 1877 (independence proclaimed from the Ottoman Empire; independence recognized 13 July 1878 by the Treaty of Berlin); 26 March 1881 (kingdom proclaimed); 30 December 1947 (republic proclaimed)
National holiday: Unification Day (of Romania and Transylvania), 1 December (1918)
Legal system: civil law system
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Klaus IOHANNIS (since 21 December 2014)
head of government: Prime Minister Dacian CIOLOS (since 17 November 2015); Deputy Prime Ministers Costin Grigore BORC and Vasile DANCU (since 17 November 2015)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister
elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 2 November 2014 with a runoff on 16 November 2014 (next to be held on 16 November 2019); prime minister appointed by the president with consent of Parliament
election results: Klaus IOHANNIS elected president; percent of vote in runoff - Klaus IOHANNIS (PNL) 54.4%, Victor PONTA (PSD) 45.6%
Legislative branch: bicameral Parliament or Parlament consists of the Senate or Senat (176 seats; 137 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote and 39 directly elected in single-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camera Deputatilor (412 seats; 315 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote and 97 directly elected in single-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms); note - in the Chamber of Deputies, seats are reserved for minority parties that receive at least 10 percent of total valid votes cast
elections: Senate - last held on 9 December 2012 (next to be held by December 2016); Chamber of Deputies - last held on 9 December 2012 (next to be held by December 2016)
election results: Senate - percent of vote by alliance/party - USL 60.1%, ARD 16.7%, PP-DD 14.6%, UDMR 5.3%, other 3.3%; seats by alliance/party - USL 122, ARD 24, PP-DD 21, UDMR 9; Chamber of Deputies - percent of vote by alliance/party - USL 58.6%, ARD 16.5%, PP-DD 14%, UDMR 5.2%, ethnic minorities 2.6%, other 3.1%; seats by alliance/party - USL 273, ARD 56, PP-DD 47, UDMR 18, ethnic minorities 18
Judicial branch: highest court(s): High Court of Cassation and Justice (consists of 111 judges organized into civil, penal, commercial, contentious administrative and fiscal business, and joint sections); Supreme Constitutional Court (consists of 9 members)
judge selection and term of office: High Court of Cassation and Justice judges appointed by the president upon nomination by the Superior Council of Magistracy, a 19-member body of judges, prosecutors, and law specialists; judges appointed for 6-year renewable terms; Constitutional Court members - 6 elected by Parliament and 3 appointed by the president; members serve 9-year, non-renewable terms
subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal; regional tribunals; first instance courts; military and arbitration courts
Political parties and leaders: Christian-Democratic National Peasants' Party or PNT-CD [Aurelian PAVELESCU]
Conservative Party or PC [Daniel CONSTANTIN] (formerly Humanist Party or PUR)
Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania or UDMR [Hunor KELEMEN]
National Liberal Party or PNL [Alina GORGIU and Vasile BLAGA co-presidents] - combined with former PDL and FC
National Union for Romania's Progress or UNPR [Gabriel OPREA]
New Republic Party or NR [Mihail NEAMTU]
People's Party - Dan Diaconescu or PP-DD [Marin DIACONESCU]
Popular Movement Party or PMP [Eugen TOMAC]
Social Democratic Party or PSD [Victor-Viorel PONTA] (formerly Party of Social Democracy in Romania or PDSR)
Political pressure groups and leaders: other: various human rights and professional associations
International organization participation: Australia Group, BIS, BSEC, CBSS (observer), CD, CE, CEI, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, G-9, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAIA (observer), MIGA, MONUSCO, NATO, NSG, OAS (observer), OIF, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, SELEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Flag description: three equal vertical bands of blue (hoist side), yellow, and red; the national coat of arms that used to be centered in the yellow band has been removed; now similar to the flag of Chad, also resembles the flags of Andorra and Moldova
communications  
Telephones - fixed lines: total subscriptions: 4.6 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 21 (2014 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellular: total: 22.9 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 105 (2014 est.)
Telephone system: general assessment: the telecommunications sector is being expanded and modernized; domestic and international service improving rapidly, especially mobile-cellular services
domestic: more than 90% of telephone network is automatic; fixed-line teledensity exceeds 20 telephones per 100 persons; mobile-cellular teledensity roughly 110 telephones per 100 persons
international: country code - 40; the Black Sea Fiber Optic System provides connectivity to Bulgaria and Turkey; satellite earth stations - 10; digital, international, direct-dial exchanges operate in Bucharest (2011)
Radio broadcast stations: 698 (station frequency type NA) (2006)
Television broadcast stations: 623 (plus 200 repeaters) (2006)
Internet country code: .ro
Internet hosts: 2.188 million (2009)
Internet users: total: 11.2 million
percent of population: 51.7% (2014 est.)
transportation  
Airports: 45 (2013)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 26
over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 10
1,524 to 2,437 m: 11
under 914 m: 1 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 19
914 to 1,523 m: 5
under 914 m: 14 (2013)
Heliports: 2 (2013)
Pipelines: gas 3,726 km; oil 2,451 km (2013)
Railways: total: 11,268 km
broad gauge: 60 km 1.524-m gauge
standard gauge: 10,781 km 1.435-m gauge (3,292 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 427 km 0.760-m gauge (2014)
Roadways: total: 84,185 km
paved: 49,873 km (includes 337 km of expressways)
unpaved: 34,312 km (2012)
Waterways: 1,731 km (includes 1,075 km on the Danube River, 524 km on secondary branches, and 132 km on canals) (2010)
Merchant marine: total: 5
by type: cargo 1, passenger/cargo 2, petroleum tanker 1, roll on/roll off 1
foreign-owned: 1 (Russia 1)
registered in other countries: 31 (Georgia 7, Liberia 3, Malta 7, Marshall Islands 2, Moldova 2, Panama 3, Russia 1, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1, Sierra Leone 2, Tanzania 1, Togo 1, unknown 1) (2010)
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Constanta, Midia
river port(s): Braila, Galati (Galatz), Mancanului (Giurgiu), Tulcea (Danube River)
transnational issues  
Disputes - international: the ICJ gave Ukraine until December 2006 to reply, and Romania until June 2007 to issue a rejoinder, in their dispute submitted in 2004 over Ukrainian-administered Zmiyinyy/Serpilor (Snake) Island and Black Sea maritime boundary delimitation; Romania also opposes Ukraine's reopening of a navigation canal from the Danube border through Ukraine to the Black Sea
Refugees and internally displaced persons: stateless persons: 299 (2014)
Illicit drugs: major transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin transiting the Balkan route and small amounts of Latin American cocaine bound for Western Europe; although not a significant financial center, role as a narcotics conduit leaves it vulnerable to laundering, which occurs via the banking system, currency exchange houses, and casinos
Update: This page was last updated on 10 November 2015
Sources: CIA, The World Factbook, https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ro.html