One Romanian presidential vote costs Euro6-10

Publish date: 03-12-2009
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The two presidential campaign finalists, Traian Basescu and Mircea Geoana, spent between €20-30 million each on their election campaigns, according to Business Standard calculations, confirmed by political analysts. Each of the two candidates attracted the votes of more than three million Romanians.

The President of Pro-Democratia, Cristian Parvulescu, said that the study conducted by the non-governmental organization on the cost of elections indicates that the legal limit of €3 million was exceeded without a doubt. "Costs for street advertising make up about one third of the total of the presidential campaign. Starting from this reality, we can estimate a total cost of these elections at €50-70 million," said analyst Parvulescu.

Over 80 percent of the presidential campaign's costs are not recognized by political parties, and the cumulated amount spent by the top three candidates exceeds the legal limit, according to political analysts interviewed by Business Standard. This year's presidential campaign was more expensive than that in 2004.

Also, analysts said they are sceptical regarding possible legal consequences, because the entire political stage is accountable for the financing of a campaign. Business Standard's calculations compiled after interviews with the beneficiaries of the campaign, such as printing houses and advertising agencies, indicate a total amount of €70-90 mln for all candidates involved in these elections.

Political advisor Dan Andronic said that parties do not admit spending major amounts because there are many subterfuges that allow for less transparent financing.

"Amounts existing now are huge. It was a visible campaign, with a focus on people rather than parties. Some 80 percent of these costs are not recognized by parties, because there are all kinds of tricks to circumvent the law," said Andronic.

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