Administrative divisions of the Peoples' Republic of Romania

Administrative divisions of the Peoples' Republic of Romania

The regions have represented the result of a sovietic-inspired experiment regarding the administrative and territorial organisation of the People's Republic of Romania - RPR (later Socialist Republic of Romania - RSR), between 1950 and 1968.

The "rayonation" of RPR

The administrative reorganisation was followed by a new territorial division of Romania. Preparements began since January 1949, with the opportunity of discussing the law about the so called _ro. Sfaturi Populare (People's Council), when the leaders of the PMR decided to make and appeal to the soviet counselors for the rayonation of the territory of RPR. Until then, Romania had been divided into judeţe (counties), organised into " _ro. plăşi" and rural and urban " _ro. comune" (communes). The county, as a local administration form, has its origins in the medieval divisions of Wallachia. After the formation of modern-day Romania, the name extended over Moldavia also (1859), following Dobrudja (1878) and Transylvania (1923). In the period of King Carol's dictatorship (1938–1940), the counties were abolished by forming 10 "ţinuturi" (lands).


The "chiaburi" (the Romanian equivalent of kulaks) were the direct "target" of the administrative reforms. Discussions regarding the rayonation were retaken at the "Plenara CC din 15 - 17 mai 1950" (the Session of the Central Committee [of the PMR] of 15th - 17th May 1950), in the context of preparing the elections for the People's Councils. Some members of the CC were of the opinion that there should be maintained the division into counties, because Romania didn't have the territory of the USSR to be divided into regions. But Miron Constantinescu sustained that: "the term of rayonation is the correct one, because it underlines the characteristic of this reorganisation and the expression used in Stalin's quote is rayonation". Also, he presented the Report regarding the rayonation to the Session, where he underlined the fact that "all of the content of the criteria proposed here is drawn up after the study of the sovietic material, on the basis of the sovietic teachings and on the basis of the concrete support that the soviet counselors gave to us, to whom we thank for their help." At the end of July there was established a central commission of the Party to prepare the rayonation, into which there were included soviet counselors, also. The rayonation Law was published on September 6, radically changing the administrative division of Romania. Instead of the 58 counties, 424 plăşi and 6 276 comune, the territory of the RPR was divided into 28 regions, 177 rayons, 148 cities and towns and 4 052 communes. Once finalised the new administrative division, the governors pompous organised the elections for the People's Councils on December 3 1950.


*September 6 1950 - By Law nr. 5 there were abolished the 58 counties (including the 424 plăşi and 6 276 rural and urban communes), being replaced by 28 regions (composed of 177 rayons, 148 cities and towns and 4 052 communes).
*September 19 1952 - Decree nr.331. By merging, the number of regions was reduced to 18: Arad, Bacău, Baia Mare, Bârlad, Bucureşti, Cluj, Constanţa, Craiova, Galaţi, Hunedoara, Iaşi, Oradea, Piteşti, Ploieşti, Stalin, Suceava, Timişoara and, for the first time after the Great Union, an administrative entity created on ethnic criteria, Regiunea Autonomă Maghiară (The Autonomous Magyar Region).
*1956 - An intermediary step through which there were abolished the regions Arad and Bârlad.
*1960 - The final step, with territory redistribution and region renamings. The magyar administrative entity was renamed Regiunea Mureş-Autonomă Maghiară (Mureş Region - Magyar Autonomous), also modifying its territory. By the end, the number of region was reduced to 16.
*February 1968 - By the law adopted by Marea Adunare Naţională (The Great National Assembly) the old county administrative and territorial division came into act. On January 14 1968 there was published a project-map that was discussed in the organisations of the Communist Party, undergoing some changes. The final result, substantially different from the traditional situation, anterior to 1950, comprised 39 counties, Bucharest municipia, 236 cities and towns, of which 47 municipia and 2 706 communes having 13 149 villages.

ee also

*Regions of the RPR

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