Romania's ruling Liberal Party to propose finance minister as PM

Romania's ruling National Liberal Party (PNL) will propose Finance Minister Florin Citu as the next PM, two senior party sources said on Wednesday. The centrist PNL, the USR-Plus party and the ethnic Hungarian UDMR are in pole position to form a coalition government following Sunday's election, news wires reported.

Though the left-wing opposition PSD emerged as the single strongest party in the election, it failed to secure enough votes for a majority in parliament. President Klaus Iohannis will hold consultations with political parties on Monday on forming a new government, his office said on Thursday. He is widely expected to endorse Citu after the PNL puts his name forward during the consultations. PNL leader Ludovic Orban resigned as PM on Monday.

"It's going to be Florin Citu, as being the most suitable candidate for this demanding post," one PNL official told Reuters. The second said the Citu had emerged as the first choice ahead of several other candidates, including retired army general Nicolae Ciuca. Citu, who has worked for the European Investment Bank and New Zealand's central bank, will have to put together a cabinet within 10 days after being nominated, and will then need to win a vote of confidence in parliament. It may take place by 23 December.

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