ROMANIA AT A GLANCE

Romania is a Latin nation located in Southeastern Europe in the Balkan Peninsula and the western shores of the Black Sea. It is one of Europe's most beautiful, fascinating and historically rich countries.

It borders Hungary, Serbia, Ukraine, Moldova and Bulgaria and covers over 92,000 square miles. It is an upper-middle income economy, with a highly-skilled, highly-trained accomplished population of over 20 million (which includes highly regarded engineers and professionals in fields such as medicine, agriculture and IT).

Romania is the seventh most populous member of the European Union with Bucharest, its largest city and capital, being the sixth largest city in the EU. Filled with luscious green mountains and its famous coasts on the Black Sea, it is an emerging force in trade, business development, IT, agriculture, tourism, socio-economic growth and endless opportunity for development, thereby projecting itself as a contender for the top seven economies in Europe.

Following the rapid economic growth in the 2000s, Romania's economy is primarily based on services and is a producer and net exporter, among others, of machines and electric energy. With a GDP of $263.9 Billion, Romania is in the top 50 of world economies. According to the World Bank, Romania has made significant progress in restoring macroeconomic stability and reviving economic growth. Supported by a series of programs and reforms with the International Monetary Fund, European Commission and World Bank since 2009, external and internal imbalances have been substantially reduced, putting Romania on a firm footing to re-launch the process of income and living standard convergence with the European Union.

Romania recorded a $7.8 billion trade deficit in goods in 2010, giving it one of the largest trade deficits in Eastern Europe.

It has the 52nd largest labor force in the world, with 9.252 million, 49% of which work in the service sector. According to Simon and Poor's Review last October, Romania's economy is expected to grow at an average of 2.7% over the next three years, with the increase in productivity, rise in incomes and growth recovery aiding moderate further consolidation of government finances.

According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, Romania was estimated to have the fourth fastest growing travel and tourism total demand in the world, with an anticipated potential growth of 8% per year from 2007 to 2016. Tourism generates approximately 5% of Romania's economy, and it's no surprise, considering its vast array of attractions. The Danube Delta forms one of the largest and most biodiverse wetlands in the world and is the best preserved delta in Europe, as the legendary Danube River ends its eight-country journey at the Black Sea.

From its plethora of scenic, panoramic views of the Carpathian Mountains, to its historic castles in Transylvania and Bran, which include Dracula's Castle, to the painted churches of Northern Moldavia and the centuries-old folkloric village of Maramures, Romania has an abundance of history, art, folklore and tradition going back to the era of the ancient Greeks, when the region was known as Tracia. This land simply embodies the true wealth of one of Europe's most charming and bourgeoning hidden gems.

The partnership between Romania and the United States is imperative to this nation's prosperity, as well as America's geopolitical and regional economic goals. With top-grossing companies including Coca Cola, Honeywell, Ernst and Young, Microsoft and Pfizer and two military bases, the American involvement in Romanian companies is currently about USD 1 billion, according to data from the Romanian Trade Registry Office. However, many American companies choose to invest through their European divisions, which makes the total investments significantly higher.

The country is perfectly poised to open doors for political, economic, educational and business investment relations. As a flourishing economy, Romania is a limitless well of opportunity and growth, which makes it one of Europe's most underestimated countries of potential and possibility.