Former PM Dacian Cioloș tasked with forming new Romanian government

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The former European Commissioner Dacian Cioloș has been tasked with forming a new government in Romania.

Cioloș — who served as Romanian Prime Minister from 2015 to 2017 — was appointed to try and lead a new executive by President Klaus Iohannis.

“I have decided to appoint Dacian Cioloș as prime minister,” Iohannis said on Monday after consultations with political parties.

Cioloș currently chairs the centre-right USR-PLUS party, which left Romania’s former ruling coalition in September.

But the surprise move to appoint the 52-year-old politician is unlikely to resolve the country’s political deadlock.

The decision by the USR-PLUS to leave the coalition effectively resulted in the collapse of the government of Prime Minister Florin Cîțu.

Cioloș is unlikely to receive support for a new government from Romania’s Liberals (PNL), who have backed Cîțu as leader.

The far-right AUR party has also ruled out voting for a possible Cioloș government, while the left-wing opposition PSD is insisting on early elections.

Cioloș’ USR-PLUS party is currently the third-largest in Romania with 80 out of the 466 seats, behind the PSD and the Liberals.

Despite the difficult negotiations ahead, Cioloș said he was “honoured” by the appointment.

“We are ready to take on the responsibility of governing and to start negotiations with the other parties,” he said on Facebook.

“Our objective is to get Romania out of the crisis and for that we need a lot of responsibility from all political forces.”

Cioloș served as European Commissioner for Agriculture from 2010 to 2014 before his stint as Romania’s PM.

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