EU Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner visits Moldova
Benita Ferrero-Waldner, European Union Commissioner for External Relations and the European Neighbourhood Policy, has today arrived in Chisinau for a two-day official visit to the Republic of Moldova, the Delegation of the European Commission to Moldova has reported.
During her stay she will have meetings with Acting President and Speaker of the Parliament Mihai Ghimpu, Prime Minister Vlad Filat, Deputy Premier, Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Iurie Leanca, as well as presidential candidate Marian Lupu and members of the opposition, and with civil society representatives.
Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner will deliver a speech in the Parliament of Moldova on Friday, and visit a children's village established by "Concordia" - an organisation founded by Father Georg Sporschill.
This is the first visit by Commissioner since the elections in July 2009 and is an important sign of the Commission's support for the Moldova on its path towards political and economic stability, the Delegation of the European Commission stressed.
"In her meetings here, Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner will emphasize the need for Moldova to continue efforts for the effective implementation of economic and political reforms and to fully cooperate with the international financial institutions. The Commissioner will express the EU's intention to accelerate the development of the EU relationship with Moldova, making full use of the opportunities of the Eastern Partnership including the launch in January of negotiations for a new contractual agreement with Moldova to replace the current Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, and the promise of continued financial assistance to help the country cope with the financial and economic crisis in the country. She will equally express the EU's continuing engagement in the Transnistrian settlement efforts", the Delegation's press release said.
Before her departure for Chisinau, Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner underlined, "I am delighted that the new government has made closer relations with the EU central to its program. I hope that all parties in Moldova will work now to put an end to political instability so that the country can focus on tackling its important challenges. The EU can help the Republic of Moldova build for its future, and we are ready to step up our cooperation to unleash the full potential of our relationship. Another chapter in our relations will open in January with the negotiations on a New Agreement that will replace and go further than our current Partnership and Cooperation Agreement. I am certain that the agreement will bring tangible benefits to Moldovan and EU citizens".
Commenting on the Eastern Partnership, Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner stated: "It is good to see the Republic Moldova back playing an active part in the Eastern Partnership and I am delighted that the new authorities intend using all the many opportunities that this new initiative offers. In our bilateral relationship and in the multilateral activities of the Eastern Partnership the Republic of Moldova has much to gain, that will help the country move closer to the EU - and a great deal to contribute too".