The collection of data on those staying in Romania, blocked by the Parliament for the last 5 years

Beyond the nature of controlling the movement of tourists on the territory of Romania, which resembles “Big Brother”, data that could be transmitted daily by all accommodation structures would be useful in order to make correct assessments of the evolution of tourism. Currently there are only estimates instead of correct statistics and approximations instead of predictions about this economic sector. An IT system has been blocked since 2019, after the first official statement appeared in 2015 about the need to have accurate data about the number of Romanian and foreign tourists staying in Romania, every day of the year.

The Information System for Evidence of Tourism Activity in Romania (SIEATR) should have existed for several years, but it was blocked every time it could be legislated. SIEATR was supposed to be provided for by law since 2016, but no project was created to reach the Parliament, only a few pages were drawn up, within the former National Tourism Authority (ANT). Then a chapter was introduced in the draft law on Tourism, in 2017, when the relevant ministry had already been established, but when the minister changed, in 2018, the draft was changed. Even so, the law could have been voted on, if it had not been blocked several times in Parliament. The computer system does not exist even today, although it would be beneficial for all institutions.

It was very close to becoming a reality in 2017, when it entered Chapter 7 of the Tourism Law – a law adopted by the Senate in September 2019, which reached the Chamber of Deputies with registration number PLx 411/2019.

Parliamentarians did not take institutions into account

Practically, the computer system was useful both for the Ministry of Tourism and for STS, Police, ANAF, INS, but also SRI and SIE. The form in which this project arrived when it was adopted by the Senate was no longer related to the initial one, from November 2017 after the representatives of the Ministry of Tourism established the text of the law following joint meetings with all the institutions involved, including the Romanian Police, with all its structures, as well as the intelligence services, SRI and SIE.

“Art. 37 (1) This chapter regulates the activities of collecting, storing, correlating, ordering, analyzing, processing and disseminating data, as well as statistical indicators regarding tourism activities and tourists, through the Information System for Evidence of Tourism Activity in Romania, hereinafter referred to as SIEATR. It represents a set of computer systems and means, provided by the Special Telecommunications Service, necessary to keep records of tourist reception structures with accommodation functions, to evaluate tourist activity, to evaluate the circulation of tourists and to provide the necessary information to public institutions “, it was specified in the text of the law that did not reach the final vote.

STS would manage the personal data

SIEATR was to be composed of three distributed modules. The first module concerned the “Evidence of tourism service providers, legal and natural persons”, the second module established “Statistical indicators associated with tourism activity in Romania”, and the third had to draw up the “Tourist arrival and departure announcement form”.

Module 1 of SIEATR should have been managed by the central public administration authority with attributions in the field of tourism and administered from a technical point of view by the Special Telecommunications Service.

With the help of SIEATR, it was also possible to evaluate the tourist activity, but it was also useful for the business environment, because it could be used by the departments within the Ministry of Tourism, to facilitate approval, attestation and classification operations, without delays. The system had to collect personal data in compliance with the legal provisions in force, and STS would have been empowered to store the data. Legislation for the implementation of this IT system is still expected, but it seems impossible to achieve, if it will be blocked every time in the Parliament, under various pretexts.

The new Government could restore the situation from 2017

Sources inside the PSD say that the rotation could bring Mihai Tudose back to the head of the Ministry of Economy, who could restore the structure of the ministry, taking over the current Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Tourism, and for tourism it would return to the old National Authority formula ( ANT). Some of those who have business in this field support the idea of ​​unifying ministries and subordinating tourism to a strong structure that could manage a larger budget, while others want an independent ministry. The Tourism Law would also return in the present, with the possibility that shortly after the establishment of the new Executive, a new version for the SIEATR computer system, probably the initial one, from 2017, will also be sent back to Parliament for a vote.

All the projects that are made take into account some statistics that are very far from reality, precisely because of the lack of accurate data that do not reach the National Institute of Statistics and strategies cannot be designed based on them.

Source: Jurnalul by

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