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Romania is divided into forty-one counties (judete), as well as the municipality of Bucharest (Bucuresti), which is its own administrative unit. Each county is administered by a county council (consiliu judetean), responsible for local affairs, as well as a prefect, who is appointed by the central government but cannot be a member of any political party. In alphabetical order, the counties are:

Arges
Maramures
Timis
Tulcea
Vaslui
Vâlcea
Vrancea
 
Caras-Severin

Alongside the county structure, Romania is also divided into eight development regions, which correspond to NUTS-II divisions in the European Union, but which have no administrative capacity and are instead used for co-ordinating regional development projects and statistical purposes. The country is further subdivided into 2686 communes, which are rural localities, and 265 towns. Communes and towns have their own local councils and are headed by a mayor (primar). Larger and more urbanised towns gain the status of municipality, which gives them greater administrative power over local affairs.

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Maramures County

Maramures (Hungarian: Máramaros) is a county (judet) of Romania, in the Maramures region. The county seat is Baia Mare.

Demographics

In 2002, the county had a population of 510,110 and a population density of 81/km².

Romanians - 82.02% (or 418,405)
Hungarians - 9.07% (or 46,300)
Rusyns and Ukrainians - 6.67% (or 34,027)
Roma - 1.74% (or 8,913)
Germans - 0.39% (or 2,012), and others.

Year County population
1948 321,287
1956 367,114
1966 427,645
1977 492,860
1992 540,099
2002 510,110

Geography

This county has a total area of 6,304 km², of which 43% is covered by the Rodna Mountains, with its tallest peak, Pietrosul, at 2,303m altitude. Together with Gutâi and Tibles mountain ranges, the Rodna mountains are part of the Eastern Carpathians. The rest of the county are hills, plateaus, and valleys. The county is crossed by Tisa River and its main tributaries: Iza, Viseu, and Mara rivers.

Neighbours

  • Suceava County to the East.
  • Satu Mare County to the West.
  • Ukraine to the North - Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast and Zakarpattia Oblast.
  • Salaj County, Cluj County and Bistrita-Nasaud County to the South.

Economy

Maramures is known for its pastoral and agricultural traditions, largely unscathed by the industrialisation campaign that had been carried on during Romania's communist period. Ploughing, planting, harvesting, and hay making and handling are mostly done through manual labour. The county is also home to a strong mining industry of extraction of metals other than iron. The industrial plants built around Baia Mare during the communist period heavily polluted the area in the past, but recently, due to the decline of the city's industrial activity, the area is less polluted.


Tourism

The region is known for its beautiful rural scenery, local small woodwork and craftwork industry as well as for its churches and original rural architecture. There are not many paved roads in rural areas, and most of them are usually accessible.

The county's main tourist attractions:

  • The cities of Baia Mare and Sighetu Marmatiei.
  • The villages on the Iza, Mara, and Viseu Valleys.
    - The Wooden Churches of Maramures
    - The Wooden Churches of Lapus
    - The Wooden Churches of Chioar
    - The Merry Cemetery of Sapânta
  • The Rodna Mountains.

There are several guide books about travelling in Maramures. The most comprehensive Maramures guide book is "The Maramures Land touristic guide", written by Teofil Ivanciuc, and printed in 2006, in Romanian.

Administrative divisions

The county has 2 municipalities, 6 towns, and 62 communes.

Municipalities

  • Baia Mare - county seat; population: 149,735
  • Sighetu Marmatiei

Towns

  • Baia Sprie
  • Borsa
  • Cavnic
  • Seini
  • Târgu Lapus
  • Viseu de Sus

Communes

  • Ardusat
  • Arinis
  • Asuaju de Sus
  • Baita de sub Codru
  • Baiut
  • Bârsana
  • Basesti
  • Bicaz
  • Bistra
  • Bocicoiu Mare
  • Bogdan Voda
  • Boiu Mare
  • Botiza
  • Budesti
  • Calinesti
  • Câmpulung la Tisa
  • Cernesti
  • Cicârlau
  • Coas
  • Coltau
  • Copalnic-Manastur
  • Coroieni
  • Cupseni
  • Desesti
  • Dragomiresti
  • Dumbravita
  • Farcasa
  • Gârdani
  • Giulesti
  • Grosi
  • Grosii Tiblesului
  • Ieud
  • Lapus
  • Leordina
  • Miresu Mare
  • Moisei
  • Oarta de Jos
  • Ocna Sugatag
  • Oncesti
  • Petrova
  • Poienile de sub Munte
  • Poienile Izei
  • Recea
  • Remetea Chioarului
  • Remeti
  • Repedea
  • Rona de Jos
  • Rona de Sus
  • Rozavlea
  • Ruscova
  • Sacalaseni
  • Sacel
  • Salistea de Sus
  • Salsig
  • Sapânta
  • Sarasau
  • Satulung
  • Sieu
  • Sisesti
  • Somcuta Mare
  • Strâmtura
  • Suciu de Sus
  • Tautii-Magheraus
  • Ulmeni
  • Vadu Izei
  • Valea Chioarului
  • Vima Mica
  • Viseu de Jos

Historical Notes

  • The 10th century frontier county of Borsova was founded by Stephen I of Hungary
  • 11th century historical Maramures counties separation from Borsova (Rom. Borsa)
  • 1241 Tartar invasion decimated about half of the local population
  • 14th century Duke (knyaz) Bogdan of Maramures said to be founder of Moldova
  • In the Middle Ages, the historical region of Maramures was known for its salt mines and later for its lumber
  • As a result of the Paris Peace Conference (Treaty of Trianon, 1920), the historical region of Maramures was partitioned, with about three-fifths of its territory becoming part of Czechoslovakia and the remainder, south of the Tisa River, staying on Romania's territory.