Fact Check: New Fiscal Measures In Romania Do NOT Ban Cash Loans Of Over 5,000 RON Between Friends

Fact Check

  • by: Ioana Burtea
Fact Check: New Fiscal Measures In Romania Do NOT Ban Cash Loans Of Over 5,000 RON Between Friends No Such Ban

Do the recent revisions to Romania's financial discipline law prohibit cash loans or donations exceeding 5,000 RON (approximately 1,000 EUR) between friends or individuals? No, that's not true: These amendments primarily relate to overseeing business and commercial transactions aimed at mitigating tax fraud.

The claim originated in a video on TikTok by user @breakingnews555 on October 24, 2023, with the caption (translated from Romanian to English by Lead Stories staff) "Your money, in the state's pockets." It opened:

Cash transactions between physical persons, including loans between friends, cannot go over 5,000 RON per day. If a friend comes to me and says 'loan me 20,000 RON until next month because I have some payments to make ', I have to say 'Wait a minute'. I can either wire him the money from my account, assuming I have them there, or I can give him 5,000 in cash today, 5,000 tomorrow...

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

Screenshot 2023-10-26 at 15.30.02.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Thu Oct 26 11:57:09 2023 UTC)

The revisions to Law 70/ 2015 introduce changes that significantly affect cash transactions involving companies, authorized individuals and self-employed individuals who work independently. Under these changes, the maximum cash amount that can be collected in a single day from one person or company will be reduced by 80 percent. Specifically, bills and invoices can be paid in cash up to 1,000 RON per day from one source, while cash and carry stores will have the flexibility to collect up to 2,000 RON daily from one customer or business. The existing limit of 5,000 RON will be lowered when the new legislation takes effect in 2023.

Government officials and economists have clarified that these measures are designed to combat fraud, with a particular focus on small commercial businesses. The objective is to diminish Romania's underground economy, which is estimated to represent 30 percent of the nation's gross domestic product. This law specifically addresses business transactions and invoicing for services and does not extend its regulation to loans between friends or individuals.

In recent months, one of the most prevalent conspiracy theories suggests that Romania is on the path to becoming a "cashless society" with state-controlled spending, according to Panorama and Factual.ro.

Lead Stories Romania also debunked similar theories about government control through digital money.

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  Ioana Burtea

Ioana Burtea has worked in journalism for 15 years. She started her career at Mediafax news agency in Bucharest and has written for DoR magazine for over seven years. Her collaborations include publications like Europe & Me, New Eastern Europe, Balkan Insight and Washington Post. Ioana published pieces on the justice system in Romania, social affairs, politics and personal essays. In 2018,  she became a fellow of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network.  In 2021, she received the first prize in the Portrait category at the national Superscrieri journalism awards.

Read more about or contact Ioana Burtea

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