National Union for the Progress of Romania

The National Union for the Progress of Romania (Romanian: Uniunea Națională pentru Progresul României, UNPR) is a political party in Romania. The party was formed in March 2010 by independents who had broken away from the Social Democratic Party (PSD) and the National Liberal Party (PNL) to support President Traian Băsescu. Tension began soon after the party's formation between former PSD and PNL members over the distribution of leadership positions and the political direction of the new party, with former PSD members dominating. The first party congress to elect its leaders was on 1 May 2010.[1]

National Union for the Progress of Romania

Uniunea Națională pentru Progresul României
PresidentGabriel Oprea
FoundedMarch 2010
Split fromSocial Democratic Party (PSD)[1]
HeadquartersBucharest, Romania
Youth wingUNPR's Youth
Membership (2013)350,000[2]
IdeologySocial democracy[3]
Political positionCentre-left[4]
0 / 136
Chamber of Deputies
0 / 329
European Parliament
0 / 33
County Council Presidents
0 / 41
County Councillors
13 / 1,393
25 / 3,186

On 12 July 2016, former President Traian Băsescu announced that UNPR would merge with his People's Movement Party (PMP) on 20 July 2016,[6] but the process failed and Gabriel Oprea reorganised the party in June 2018.[7] At the PMP congress in March 2021, the party formally denounced and dissolved their former union with UNPR.


In 2009, parliamentarians from PSD, PNL, and other organizations left their political parties to support President Traian Băsescu. They formed the parliamentary group of independents, led by Senator Gabriel Oprea. Afterward, Oprea was named Minister of Administration and Interior.

In 2010, the majority of the group formed UNPR. On 1 May 2010, the new party elected its leaders, by Congress. Allied with the PDL and UDMR, UNPR participated in government until 2012. At the first party congress held in May 2010, Marian Sârbu was elected president. In 2011, the National Initiative Party (PIN) merged into the Union. PIN's president, Lavinia Șandru, became UNPR's vice-president but later resigned from the party citing its lack of support for her ecologist policies.

In 2012, the government led by Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu was dismissed by motion of censure and UNPR passed in opposition. On 28 May 2012, Sârbu stepped down as party leader. Following Sârbu's resignation, Gabriel Oprea was elected UNPR president. UNPR later formed with PSD, with the Center-Left Alliance (ACS) included in the Social Liberal Union.

Cristian Diaconescu, a founding member of UNPR, honorary president and former Minister of External Affairs, resigned from the union after the party changed sides and entered the Social Liberal Union. He is an independent with close ties to the right-wing conservative former President of Romania, Traian Băsescu, who appointed him as leader of the Presidential Chancellery in March 2012.

In the Romanian Parliamentary elections of December 2012, UNPR won in alliance with PSD, PNL, and PC with 10 seats in the House of Deputies and five in the Senate. Because the party lacks the necessary number of seats to form a distinct parliamentary group (12 deputies, seven senators), their parliamentarians joined the group of the Social Democratic Party (PSD). They voted for the government led by Prime Minister Victor Ponta. Oprea has served as deputy prime minister since 2013.

On 29 June 2015, the party absorbed the People's Party – Dan Diaconescu (PP-DD).[8]


UNPR's doctrine is social-democratic with shades of progressivism. The union is against right-wing policies, both conservative and neo-conservative. The union's self reported doctrine is "progressive left-wing" with a social-democratic orientation. UNPR believes in a new political and economic order, based on consolidation of the market economy within an "active state" that protects citizens and human rights. UNPR strongly supports a significant wealth tax and fair progressive taxation. UNPR's platform also includes support for the decentralization of Romania.[citation needed]


The president acts as the union's governing body; he represents the party in political conversations and parliament. The president has large powers in the union and is helped by the standing Bureau of the Union.[citation needed]


  • Gabriel Oprea - president (former vice-prime-minister)
  • Titu Bojin - vice-president
  • Nuțu Fonta - secretary general

Electoral history

Legislative elections

Election Chamber Senate Position Aftermath
Votes % Seats Votes % Seats
2012 4,344,288 58.63
10 / 412
4,457,526 60.10
5 / 176
(within USL)1
USL government (until March 2014)
PSD-UNPR-UDMR-PC government (until December 2014)
PSD-UNPR-ALDE government (until November 2015)
Supporting Cioloș Cabinet (Ind.)
2016 did not compete2
3 / 329
did not compete2
0 / 136
- Opposition to PSD-ALDE government (until July 2018)
Supporting PSD-ALDE government (until August 2019)3
Supporting PSD minority government (until November 2019)
Opposition to PNL minority government


1 USL was an alliance of two smaller alliances: Centre Left Alliance and Centre Right Alliance. Centre Left Alliance members: PSD (58 senators and 149 deputies) and UNPR (5 senators and 10 deputies). Centre Right Alliance members: PNL (51 senators and 101 deputies) and PC (8 senators and 13 deputies).

2 In July 2016 UNPR merged with PMP. The merger was revoked in June 2018.

3 After the merger with PMP was revoked and the party was reinstated.

Presidential elections

Election Candidate First round Second round
Votes Percentage Position Votes Percentage Position
2014 Victor Ponta13,836,093
 1st 5,264,383
2019 did not compete


1 Victor Ponta was a member of PSD, but endorsed by an alliance made of PSD, UNPR and PC.

European elections

ElectionVotesPercentageMEPsPositionEU PartyEP Group
2014 2,093,237 37.60%
2 / 32
(within USD)1
2019 54,942 0.61%
0 / 33


1 Social Democractic Union (USD) members: PSD (12 MEPs), PC (2 MEPs) and UNPR.

See also


  1. "New Romanian party elects leaders", SETimes, 2 May 2010, retrieved 6 November 2012
  2. "Cati membri au partidele din Romania. Ce partid a pierdut din adepti". Retrieved 18 November 2014.
  3. Nordsieck, Wolfram (2015). "Romania". Parties and Elections in Europe. Archived from the original on 25 October 2016.
  4. Dąborowski, Tomasz (23 May 2012), "A majority electoral system is introduced in Romania", CeWeekly, OSW Centre for Eastern Studies, archived from the original on 4 August 2012, retrieved 6 November 2012
  5. Structuri parlamentare Legislatura 2016-prezent
  6. "UNPR fuzionează prin absorbţie cu PMP/ Băsescu: Gabriel Oprea rămâne doar cu onoarea, partidul nu mai e după fuziune. Partidul se va numi Partidul Mişcarea Populară" (in Romanian). Mediafax. 12 July 2016. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  7. Gabriel Oprea revine pe scena politică, UNPR se reorganizează
  8. "Oprea: Am încheiat o fuziune prin absobţie cu PP-DD. Suntem un partid al uşilor deschise". Retrieved 2017-03-31.