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Varujan Vosganian

Varujan Vosganian

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Varujan Vosganian is a Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

n politician, economist, essayist and poet. A member of the National Liberal Party
National Liberal Party (Romania)
The National Liberal Party , abbreviated to PNL, is a centre-right liberal party in Romania. It is the third-largest party in the Romanian Parliament, with 53 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 22 in the Senate: behind the centre-right Democratic Liberal Party and the centre-left Social...

, Vosganian was Romania's Minister of Economy and Commerce in the Tăriceanu cabinet
Calin Popescu-Tariceanu
Călin Constantin Anton Popescu-Tăriceanu is a Romanian politician. He was the Prime Minister of Romania between 29 December 2004 and 22 December 2008...

.

Biography


Born in Craiova
Craiova
Craiova , Romania's 6th largest city and capital of Dolj County, is situated near the east bank of the river Jiu in central Oltenia. It is a longstanding political center, and is located at approximately equal distances from the Southern Carpathians and the River Danube . Craiova is the chief...

 to a family of Armenian ethnicity
Armenians in Romania
Armenians have been present in what is now Romania and Moldova for over a millennium, and have been an important presence as traders since the 14th century...

, Vosganian studied at the Alexandru Ioan Cuza High School in Focşani
Focsani
Focşani is the capital city of Vrancea County in Romania on the shores the Milcov river, in the historical region of Moldavia. It has a population of 101,854.-Geography:...

. He then studied Commerce at the Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies
Academy of Economic Studies
The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies is the oldest university of economics and business studies in Romania. It was founded in April 6, 1913 in Bucharest, by the royal decree of Carol I of Romania, under the name Academy of High Commercial and Industrial Studies...

 (graduated 1982) and Mathematics at the University of Bucharest
University of Bucharest
The University of Bucharest , in Romania, is a university founded in 1864 by decree of Prince Alexander John Cuza to convert the former Saint Sava Academy into the current University of Bucharest.-Presentation:...

 (graduated 1991), gaining a Ph.D.
Doctor of Philosophy
Doctor of Philosophy, abbreviated as Ph.D., PhD, D.Phil., or DPhil , in English-speaking countries, is a postgraduate academic degree awarded by universities...

 in economics in 1998.

In 1990, he became president of the Armenians' Union of Romania and he was twice (1990-1992 and 1992-1996) elected a member of the Chamber of Deputies
Chamber of Deputies of Romania
The Chamber of Deputies is the lower house in Romania's bicameral parliament. It has 315 seats, to which deputies are elected by direct popular vote on a proportional representation basis to serve four-year terms...

, and twice a Senator
Senate of Romania
The Senate of Romania is the upper house in the bicameral Parliament of Romania. It has 137 seats , to which members are elected by direct popular vote, using Mixed member proportional representation in 42 electoral districts , to serve four-year terms.-Former location:After the Romanian...

 (1996-2000 and 2004-2008), on the lists of the National Liberal Party
National Liberal Party (Romania)
The National Liberal Party , abbreviated to PNL, is a centre-right liberal party in Romania. It is the third-largest party in the Romanian Parliament, with 53 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 22 in the Senate: behind the centre-right Democratic Liberal Party and the centre-left Social...

.

Between 1996 and 2003, he was the leader of Uniunea Forţelor de Dreapta, a small right wing
Right-wing politics
In politics, Right, right-wing and rightist generally refer to support for a hierarchical society justified on the basis of an appeal to natural law or tradition. To varying degrees, the Right rejects the egalitarian objectives of left-wing politics, claiming that the imposition of equality is...

 liberal
Liberalism
Liberalism is the belief in the importance of liberty and equal rights. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but generally, liberals support ideas such as constitutionalism, liberal democracy, free and fair elections, human rights,...

 party, which was eventually merged into the National Liberal Party
National Liberal Party (Romania)
The National Liberal Party , abbreviated to PNL, is a centre-right liberal party in Romania. It is the third-largest party in the Romanian Parliament, with 53 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 22 in the Senate: behind the centre-right Democratic Liberal Party and the centre-left Social...

.

Vosganian has written several books, especially on economics and politics, but also fiction and poetry. He is a member of the Romanian Writers' Union, and since 2005, he has served as its vice president. Vosganian is also a leading member of the Romanian Humorists' Association.

In October 2006, he was nominated to be a member of the European Commission
European Commission
The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union. The body is responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and the general day-to-day running of the Union....

 after Romania joined the EU
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 on 1 January 2007. After his nomination, some Romanian newspapers claimed that he was a Securitate
Securitate
The Securitate was the secret police agency of Communist Romania. Previously, the Romanian secret police was called Siguranţa Statului. Founded on August 30, 1948, with help from the Soviet NKVD, the Securitate was abolished in December 1989, shortly after President Nicolae Ceaușescu was...

 informer
Informant
An informant is a person who provides privileged information about a person or organization to an agency. The term is usually used within the law enforcement world, where they are officially known as confidential or criminal informants , and can often refer pejoratively to the supply of information...

, but the charges were disproved within days and the National Council for Studying the Securitate's Archives (CNSAS) announced that he did not collaborate with the Securitate. Vosganian intends to sue the newspaper.

Moreover, leading EU Socialists
Socialism
Socialism is an economic system characterized by social ownership of the means of production and cooperative management of the economy; or a political philosophy advocating such a system. "Social ownership" may refer to any one of, or a combination of, the following: cooperative enterprises,...

 claimed he had no "European profile" and was "on the payroll of big economic tycoons". As a consequence, Vosganian decided to retract his candidature on 28 October.

In December 2006, he was named Minister of Economy and commerce.

Political views


Even though he is a member of the National Liberal Party
National Liberal Party (Romania)
The National Liberal Party , abbreviated to PNL, is a centre-right liberal party in Romania. It is the third-largest party in the Romanian Parliament, with 53 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 22 in the Senate: behind the centre-right Democratic Liberal Party and the centre-left Social...

, and is a supporter of economic liberalism
Economic liberalism
Economic liberalism is the ideological belief in giving all people economic freedom, and as such granting people with more basis to control their own lives and make their own mistakes. It is an economic philosophy that supports and promotes individual liberty and choice in economic matters and...

, Vosganian's political views can be characterised as right-wing conservative
Conservatism
Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional institutions and supports, at the most, minimal and gradual change in society. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism...

. The party which he led until 2003, the Uniunea Forţelor de Dreapta, was described as having an "extremist background" by Liliana Ruse, a journalist at the Gândul
Gândul
Gândul is a Romanian daily newspaper published in Bucharest. It was founded in May 2005 by Mircea Dinescu, who used to write a daily editorial called "Vorba lu' Dinescu", and Cristian Tudor Popescu, who was also the editor-in-chief until January 2008. Its initial circulation was about 52,000...

newspaper, particularly for making statements against the Roma minority
Roma minority in Romania
The Roma constitute one of the major minorities in Romania. According to the 2002 census, they number 535,140 people or 2.5% of the total population, being the second-largest ethnic minority in Romania after Hungarians...

. Vosganian is also a member of the Rost Association, a Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

 right-wing organisation, where he publishes articles in the Rost Magazine.

Vosganian is a significant supporter of the movement for unification of Romania and Moldova
Movement for unification of Romania and Moldova
A movement for the reunification of Romania and Moldova began in both countries after the Romanian Revolution of 1989 and the beginning of glasnost policy in the Soviet Union...

, believing that as long as the two countries (Romania
Romania
Romania is a country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeastern Europe, on the Lower Danube, within and outside the Carpathian arch, bordering on the Black Sea...

 and the Republic of Moldova) remain separate, "the Romanian people will be the last people to bear the shame of being divided by an artificial frontier." He has also described himself as an "incurable unionist". In fact, in 1996, he provoked controversy when stating that he does not recognise the Republic of Moldova as an independent state.

Publications

  • Şamanul albastru: poezii. Bucharest: Editura Ararat, 1994. ISBN 9739668216
  • Statuia comandorului proze. Bucharest: Editura Ararat, 1994. ISBN 9739668232
  • Jurnal de front articole economice. Bucharest: Editura Staff, 1994. ISBN 9739611192
  • Ochiul cel alb al Reginei (The Queen's vacant gaze). Bucharest: Cartea Românească, 2001. ISBN 9732309628

External links