Mugur Isărescu

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Mugur Isărescu
Grand Cross and Sash ranks of the Order of the Star of Romania
Mugur Isărescu.jpg
Prime Minister of Romania
In office
16 December 1999 – 28 December 2000
President Emil Constantinescu
Ion Iliescu
Preceded by Alexandru Athanasiu (Acting)
Succeeded by Adrian Năstase
Governor of the BNR
Assumed office
28 December 2000
Preceded by Eugen Ghizari (ad interim)
In office
September 1990 – December 1999
Preceded by Decebal Urdea
Succeeded by Eugen Ghizari (ad interim)
Personal details
Born (1949-08-01) 1 August 1949 (age 66)
Drăgăşani, Romania
Political party Independent
Alma mater Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies

Constantin Mugur Isărescu (Romanian pronunciation: [ˈmuɡur isəˈresku]; born 1 August 1949) is the Governor of the National Bank of Romania, a position he held since September 1990, with the exception of an eleven months period (22 December 1999 to 28 November 2000), during which he served as Prime Minister of Romania. He is a member of the Romanian Academy.

Early life[edit]

Isărescu was born in Drăgăşani, Vâlcea County. His father was a school teacher who, after the establishment of the socialist state, studied at the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest, worked as a bank executive during the 1950s and then he was a professor of accounting for 20 years.[1]

Isărescu studied international trade at the Academy of Economic Studies of Bucharest, which he graduated in 1971.[1] For the next 19 years, he worked as a researcher for the Institute of International Economics, an institute that was mostly like controlled by the Securitate.[1]

He took a number of courses in the United States, writing several papers on capitalist economics and completed a PhD on exchange rate policies.[1] Isărescu claims it was as if he prepared for 20 years for the 1990 moment.[1]

After the Romanian Revolution of 1989, he worked for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, then, in March 1990, he was sent to work as an economic and monetary affairs secretary at the Romanian Embassy in the United States.[2][1]

He expected that Romania would need IMF help within a couple of years, but he was surprised to find that the government depleted the foreign-exchange reserves within six months and, as such, he was recalled to Romania in July 1990 to head the National Bank.[1]

Governor of the National Bank of Romania[edit]

In September 1990 he was named Governor of the National Bank of Romania by the Romanian government.[2] During the early years, he negotiated several agreements with the International Monetary Fund.[1] His mandate was renewed by the Romanian Parliament in 1991, 1998, 2004 and 2009.[2]

Isărescu managed in 15 years of leadership at the National Bank of Romania to create and maintain a mysterious aura around the policies of the National Bank[dubious ], and many[who?] pointed out that the agenda of the Bank remained independent from any Romanian Government. Many[who?] credit the National Bank team for saving Romania's economy from a Bulgarian-type collapse, raising the national gold and Euro reserves beyond needs, cutting down inflation to single-digit figures and introducing the New Leu.

In 2009, World Records Academy named him as the longest serving governor of a central bank.[3]

Prime Minister of Romania[edit]

In 1999, he was asked to become Prime Minister of Romania, which he accepted on the condition that he could return to the National Bank after it was over.[1] Then-President Emil Constantinescu agreed with the terms[1] and on 16 December 1999 Isărescu was sworn in as Prime Minister of Romania, but only for about a year, since in November 2000, the ruling coalition lost the elections.

In November 2000 Isărescu ran for President of Romania but was soundly defeated, coming in fourth place and receiving 9% of the vote.

Thereafter, he returned to the National Bank of Romania for another term as Governor.

Although he served only one year as Prime Minister, Isărescu is considered[by whom?] to have started the reform process[clarification needed], continued later by Adrian Năstase and Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu. During his premiership, on February 15, 2000, Romania formally initiated negotiations with the European Union (a process started by the Romanian application in 1995 and European Commission approval on October 13, 1999[4]). As governor of the National Bank of Romania, Mugur Isărescu has coordinated Romania's economic policy since 1990, being considered by some[by whom?] the hidden Prime Minister of the country.[citation needed]

He is a member of the Club of Rome, the Trilateral Commission and a Grand Cross and Sash ranks of the Order of the Star of Romania recipient.

He was considered several times between 2009 and 2012 as a suitable replacement for Emil Boc as Prime Minister of Romania. Isărescu declined the offer from President Băsescu, refusing to re-assume his former office in order to remain Governor of BNR.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Faţa nevăzută a lui Mugur Isărescu, guvernatorul pasionat de desene animate: „Pot fredona sau chiar dansa ca ursul Baloo“". Adevărul. 2013-06-01. Retrieved 2015-07-25. 
  2. ^ a b c "Banca Naţională a României - Guvernatorul BNR". National Bank of Romania. Retrieved 2015-07-25. 
  3. ^
  4. ^

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Alexandru Athanasiu
Prime Minister of Romania
Succeeded by
Adrian Năstase
Business positions
Preceded by
Decebal Urdea
Governor of the National Bank of Romania
Succeeded by
Eugen Ghizari
Preceded by
Eugen Ghizari
Governor of the National Bank of Romania