Foreign Minister: Moldova wants normal economic relations with Russia – francinebavay.info
At that time, Moldova froze its relationship with Russia after accusing Russia of trying to kill the ruling, pro-Western Democratic Party's leader. EXCLUSIVE / In a wide-ranging interview, the minister of foreign affairs and European integration of Moldova, Tudor Ulianovschi, talks about. CHISINAU, January 4. /TASS/. The Russian-Moldovan relations need to be reset at all levels, Moldovan President Igor Dodon said in an.
According to international indexes on democracy and freedom of the press, Moldova constantly maintains partially free status, with a downward trend at the current moment.
The country is still a parliamentary republic, despite having a directly elected president. In fact, the foreign policy orientation of the country has been at the core of every national election in recent years. This constant East vs.
As long as the country stays hostage to this foreign policy dualism, it also remains highly vulnerable to creeping foreign influence. Russian military presence in the separatist region of Transnistria, just as the frozen conflict itself, poses a major security vulnerability for the still young and rather weak Moldovan state. West The domestic environment in Moldova reveals a constant confrontation between the European pattern of development and the nostalgia of the past Soviet regime, which considerably slows down the transition to genuine democratic statehood.
East — West controversy is generated by both internal and external factors, due to strong historical, economic and political reasons, as well as various stakeholders pursuing geopolitical and geostrategic interests. The foreign policy trends in Moldova are associated mostly with watershed political events, external pressure or major domestic dissatisfaction with the foreign policy trajectory of the country.
As early asthe communist leader Vladimir Voronin, at that time President of the Republic of Moldova, turned to the West, committing Moldova to democratic reforms and partnership with the Euro-Atlantic community.
Nevertheless, the European foreign policy vector was reflected more at the level of political statements rather than authentic reform process. Late was the time when Moldova came closest to national consensus regarding European integration. After almost a decade of nominal European integration efforts and reforms that are mostly carried out in name only, public support for EU integration has plummeted to about half of what it was in It is all the more surprising to see the ruling Democratic Party suggest an amendment to the Moldovan Constitution that would enshrine the EU integration vector as the only legitimate foreign policy course.
After having contributed to the discredit of the EU image in Moldova, the ruling party is now attempting to save face by forcing EU integration into the supreme law, despite lack of public support. It is highly ironic as this goes against EU norms and values, which emphasize representative democracy. But the rationale behind this political move is aimed at capitalizing on the main cleavage that defines Moldovan political competition — the dichotomy between the Eastern vector and the Western one.
Moldova–Russia relations - Wikipedia
After winning the presidential race, Igor Dodon, former leader of the Party of Socialists, has stayed true to his campaign promise of building better relations with Russia, denouncing the Association Agreement with the EU and joining the Eurasian Union instead.
Since the benefits of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas between Moldova and the EU are only beginning to bear fruit and many of the adjustment costs have been already incurred, it would not make any economic sense to reverse the policy. That is one way, perhaps of looking at that. In this case, there will be a direct responsibility of that elected official towards a certain region of the Republic of Moldova so hopefully — and this is my understanding — that the responsibility and accountability of particular MPs but also the Parliament in general, will increase.
Moldova gives the impression of a divided country also because the president is pro —Russian, the government is pro-European and pro-western, you yourself are pro-European and pro-western. Do you think that at some point Moldova will have a less ambiguous and clearer pro-European positioning?
I will tell you like this. Number one, I am a clear pro—European, pro-Westerner. Number two, I think the Republic of Moldova has reached the point of no return in its European integration path.
- Foreign Minister: Moldova wants normal economic relations with Russia
- Moldova–Russia relations
- Moldova needs reset in its relations with Russia - President Dodon
From this perspective, I think that what is most important for us is to ensure the implementation of the Association Agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the European Union, which at this point, would allow the Republic of Moldova to have better institutions, better economic development, and therefore from the perspective of which model of development, or which model of the future development of the Republic of Moldova is more beneficial for its citizens.
And now I speak also as a citizen of the Republic of Moldova. And this is important, also to understand that the European model of development is not only beneficial to the government, but for the citizens of the Republic of Moldova. And this is where, I think is important, to better communicate to the citizens of the Republic of Moldova, being in a very dynamic geopolitical context, geopolitical environment.
We have been a part of the Soviet Union, we have been independent for 26 years, that is why it is important for the government to help the Moldovan citizens make their own decisions.
But they have to have access to the European format of development, the European format of democracy, and to have access of information, and this is where the task of the government is to better inform the Moldovan citizens of the advantages provided by the EU integration. And also, if we look at the opinion polls, the majority today in Moldova are showing a preference towards the EU that has to be sustained by the efforts of the Moldovan government to better implement the reforms, to restructure the justice sector reform, to fight corruption, and this would also, in my opinion, will further increase.
I read the speech of your prime minister at the Munich security conference. He made the point that the same division I was telling you about Moldova exists in many of the eastern European countries.
Of course, many of them are already EU members but the same problems exist. Being from Eastern Europe myself, I think he has a point: Probably Moldova would like to have the same chances like those countries, despite those divisions, which are the result of historical circumstances.
What is your take? I think that looking at the Republic of Moldova from the perspective of the division of the spheres of influence is a wrong approach, it is not a constructive approach.
The best approach is to speak from the perspective of the Republic of Moldova and its sovereignty. The sovereignty of the Republic of Moldova or any country whatsoever relies on the fact that a country decides for itself where it wants to be. I was also at the Munich security conference, accompanying the prime minister Pavel Filip, who has stated very clearly, that the Republic of Moldova has good relations with the West and also good relations with the East, and with the Russian Federation.
When I speak to Russian diplomats, they say that, unlike others, Moldova has not adopted sanctions against Russia in the same way as countries in the EU orbit have.
Are you under pressure from Mogherini or from other representatives of the European Union to introduce sanctions? No, we cannot speak of any pressure from the European partners and from Madame Mogherini at all, to impose any sanctions in relation to the Russian Federation. On the contrary, unfortunately, the Russian Federation was imposing certain trade barriers to imports of Moldovan products.
In our opinion, the fact that we are facing the vast majority of Moldovan products not being allowed to enter the Russian Federation markets, especially the Moldovan wine and other agricultural products, is a violation of the bilateral agreement between the Republic of Moldova and the Russian Federation on the free trade.
So, I would say on the contrary, the Republic of Moldova would like to have normal economic relations with the Russian Federation but we are yet to see a more open policy from Moscow. Is this the main problem?
I mean, when I look at the type of relations Moldova has with the EU, what triggers this Russian attitude? Unfortunately, we see a historical consecutivity on the imposing by the Russian Federation of barriers to trade for Moldovan products, and this was first seen when the action plan between the Republic of Moldova and the EU was adopted in and at that time it was a huge blow to the Moldovan economy, to the Moldovan exports, because at that time we were exporting a lot of our goods to the Russian Federation, and after this EU-Moldova action plan was signed, we have seen an embargo from the Russian Federation.