EU to start negotiations with Moldova on Association agreement
The first group of European Union experts will come to Chisinau this week to initiate negotiations on signing an agreement on Moldova's associated EU membership, it was said at the meetings Moldova's senior officials held here with Karl Bildt, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sweden, which country is chairing the European Union presently.
Asked by journalists when the agreement may be signed, Prime Minister Vlad Filat said this will be a fairly complex-like document, so it may come to be ready for signing somewhat later than in early 2010, as was initially expected. For instance, Moldova's Acting President, Parliament Chairman Mihai Ghimpu stated recently upon return from Brussels that the Agreement might be signed before the end of this year.
During his meeting with Karl Bildt, Mihai Ghimpu said the main objectives the governing Alliance for European Integration has set itself are: democratization of Moldova, overcoming the socio-economic crisis, and integration into Europe.
Ghimpu said democratic reforms and the economic development are impossible without a domestic political stability and without an external financial assistance, so an emphasis will be put on attracting of foreign investment.
He stressed the Republic of Moldova will be implementing Eastern Partnership projects, but citizens want Moldova to join the European family of nations possibly sooner. He reaffirmed Moldova's desire to sign an associated membership agreement with the European Union as soon as possible.
Karl Bildt said, this Agreement will be a follow-up of the EU-Moldova European Neighborhood Policy Action Plan, but more ambitious than the Plan. The European Union hopes that negotiations should be started shortly on a free trade agreement and on liberalization of visa regime for citizens of Moldova.
Mihai Ghimpu voiced hope the Moldovan Parliament will elect a new president for the republic in the nearest future and will thus complete the forming of the country's new government, which will ensure a political stability.
Karl Bild discussed the presidential election topic also with the former President of Moldova, Chairman of the Communist Party Vladimir Voronin, who highlighted the permanent assistance Sweden provides for Moldova to help the republic get integrated into Europe.
According to the Communist Party's press service, Vladimir Voronin stated that the MCP will be supporting any initiative of the new authorities if their initiatives are aimed at European integration, preservation of the country's neutrality status, peaceful settlement of the Transnistria conflict, and country democratization in conformity with European standards.Infotag