Population: 19,043,767 (est.)
- The Romanian leu is the official currency of Romania.
- Romania is a secular state and has no state religion. However, the majority of the country’s citizens identify themselves as Christians.
- Around 86.7% of the country’s population identified as Orthodox Christian and there are also small factions of Jews, Muslims and Atheists in the country.
- Romania’s Danube Delta is a World Heritage site and is the second largest delta in the whole of Europe.
- More than half of Romania’s Jewish population died in the Second World War.
- Romania joined the European Union in 2007, along with Bulgaria.
- Irish author Bram Stoker based his horror novel ‘Dracula’ on the fifteenth century Wallachian Prince, Vlad Dracul of Romania.
- Romania’s most prominent mineral resource is oil.
- Romania is the ninth largest nation in European Union by area. Its capital is Bucharest which is largest city in the country and the 10th largest in the European Union.
- The traditional sport of Romania is Oin which is unique and is similar to baseball.
- Gypsies have a considerable population in Romania have representatives in Romanian parliament.
- Romania has a developing, upper-middle income market economy, the 11th largest in the European Union by total nominal GDP and the 8th largest based on purchasing power parity.
- Until 2009, Romanian economic growth was among the fastest in Europe (officially 8.4% in 2008 and more than three times the EU average) yet it has since been heavily damaged by the economic downturn.
Romania is a country located at the intersection of Central and Southeastern Europe, bordering on the Black Sea. Romania shares a border with Hungary and Serbia to the west, Ukraine and Moldova to the northeast and east, and Bulgaria to the south. At 238,400 square kilometers (92,000 sq mi), Romania is the ninth largest country of the European Union by area, and has the seventh largest population of the European Union with more than 19 million people. Its capital and largest city is Bucharest, the tenth largest city in the EU.
The United Principalities emerged when the territories of Moldavia and Wallachia were united under Prince Alexander Ioan Cuza in 1859. In 1881 Prince Karl of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen was crowned as King Carol I the first monarch of the Kingdom of Romania. Independence from the Ottoman Empire was declared on 9 May 1877, and was internationally recognized the following year. At the end of World War I, Transylvania, Bukovina and Bessarabia united with the Kingdom of Romania. Greater Romania emerged into an era of progression and prosperity that would continue until the eve of World War II. That war caused the rise of a military dictatorship in Romania under fascist General Antonescu, who chose to fight on the side of the Axis powers from 1941 to 1944. After his removal, Romania switched sides in 1944 and joined the Allies. By the end of the war, some formerly Romanian northeastern territories were occupied by the Soviet Union, with Red Army units stationed on Romanian soil. Then Romania forcibly became a People’s Republic and a member of the Warsaw Pact.
With the fall of the Iron Curtain and the 1989 Revolution, Romania began its transition towards democracy and a capitalist market economy. After a decade of post-revolution economic problems and living-standards decline, extensive reforms fostered economic recovery. As of 2010, Romania is an upper-middle-income country with a high human development index.
Romania joined NATO on 29 March 2004, and the European Union on 1 January 2007. It is also a member of the: Latin Union, Francophonie, OSCE, WTO, BSEC, United Nations, etc. Today, Romania is a unitary semi-presidential republic, in which the executive branch consists of the President and the Government.