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There is a hysterical anti-Austrian sentiment in Romania surrounding the decision to block the country’s Schengen accession, with customers withdrawing their money from Austrian banks and many demanding the nationalization of the oil company OMV, economic portal VG.hu reported.
Last week, Austria and the Netherlands vetoed the accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the Schengen area.
Public officials in Bucharest, the government, and parliamentary parties have strongly denounced the Viennese government. The Romanian foreign ministry has summoned the Austrian ambassador in protest and even called the head of Romania’s diplomatic mission in Vienna home for consultations, VG reported.
Videos of Erste Bank customers cutting their bank cards with scissors are already circulating on social media, while someone painted “Nazi Bank” and “Nazis = Austria” on the entrance to a Raiffeisen Bank branch in Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár) over the weekend.
From now on, I will not miss Vienna, the Austrian ski resorts, I will manage without OMV, Omniasig, Raiffeisen, Pfanner, Atomic, Fischer, Frey Wille, Julius Meinl, Humanic, Red Bull, Swarovski,
Voicu Vuscan, a major businessman from Transylvania and manager of one of the country’s biggest meat processors, the US-owned Elit posted on social media.
However, economic analysts do not think it is a good idea to cut ties with Austrian companies, as it puts the livelihoods of thousands of Romanian employees at risk. The two big Austrian-owned banks alone employ around 10,000 people in Romania.
The portal added that Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó spoke out in favor of Romania’s accession to Schengen.
The policies of Romania’s government have been sharply criticized by a party representing the Hungarian minority in Transylvania. According to EMSZ, the political elite was responsible for the fact that the country’s accession to the Schengen area had once again failed.
Featured photo via MTI/EPA/Robert Ghement