Estonian presidency of EU Council and implications for Moldova

Publicate August 5, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: UE şi RM

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Since July until the end of 2017, Estonia will be responsible for the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union (which consists of representatives of national governments). So, Estonia is the second ex-Soviet county, after Latvia in 2015, that will hold the presidency of the Council of the EU. The Estonian presidency is integrated into a broad program of actions that was thought up for 18 months and is implemented together with another two countries, Bulgaria and Austria. Consequently, the strategic priorities of the Estonian presidency will be mainly identical to those assumed by the next, Bulgarian and Austrian presidencies.

Estonia takes over the presidency from Malta, another small country that during six months promoted the position and initiatives of the EU Council without failures. Despite the fact that Malta surprised the European colleagues with early legislative elections, the Maltese presidency was marked by a number of important accomplishments, including the ensuring of unity among the member states on the negotiation of the Brexit, increase in transparency on the European natural gas market, advancement of the European fishing policies (Politico, June 2017). Read the rest of this post »

Restoration of power supplies from Transnistrian region and weakness of European factor

Publicate Iulie 27, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: UE şi RM, Uncategorized

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Supplies of electric power from the region controlled by the separatist regime to the rest of Moldova were restored on June 5, 2017, as a result of a decision taken by the state-run energy company Energocom. Thus, outside an open tender contest, Energocom negotiated and signed a contract with the Cuciurgan Power Plant (Moldavskaya GRES). The given contract, which wasn’t made public, provides that as of June 7 Energocom will purchase 70% of the necessary electricity from the Transnistrian region. The other 30% are to be bought from the Ukrainian company DTEK-Trading. According to the state-run Energocom, the producer from the Transnistrian region, which belongs to the Russian concern RAO EES, offered a price of US$ 45 per 1MWh. This is by 10% less than the electricity price negotiated with the supplier from Ukraine (US$ 50.2 per 1MWh) as a result of the open tender contest. Read the rest of this post »

Venice Commission, mixed-member electoral system and European assistance

Publicate Iulie 20, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: UE şi RM, Uncategorized

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The Venice Commission’s opinion about the Democrats’ and Socialists’ proposal to introduce the mixed-member electoral system becomes a crucial benchmark for the allotment of macro-financial assistance to Moldova by the EU.

The intervention of the EU-Council of Europe duo in the case of the mixed-member system creates at least three important precedents for Moldova and the whole European neighborhood. First of all, the European Union shows flexibility and ingeniousness by imposing for the first time political preconditions for offering macro-financial assistance. Secondly, the EU transforms the recommendations of the Council of Europe/Venice Commission into preconditions for disbursing the macro-financial assistance. Moreover, the EU maintains the political precondition among the criteria for assessing the progress throughout the assistance allotment period. Last but not least, a precedent is set as regards the real impact that the European Parliament can have on the modification of the “contractual terms” of the macro-financial assistance that the European Commission proposes to the applicant third countries. This case highlights that the European legislature also has the capacity to promote the interests of the people from the countries of its neighborhood, including Moldova. Read the rest of this post »

European values versus traditional values and geopolitical subtext in Moldova

Publicate Iunie 29, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: Rusia pretutindeni, UE şi RM, Uncategorized

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The foundations of the European Union and, respectively, the European integration processes derive from a set of European values, such as democracy, human rights, human dignity and the rule of law. These are defined in the European treaties that govern internal order in the EU, its relationship with the EU member states and its people. With the maturation of the European project, especially after the signing of the Treaty of Lisboan (December 2009), the European values started to be consolidated through the EU’s dialogue with the external world. The EU’s enlargement of 2004-2007 considerably extended the geography of the European values. The launch of the Eastern Partnership (2009) led to the stimulation of the EU’s relations with Eastern Europe, contributing to the more articulated promotion of the European values in the region. The signatories of the EU – Moldova Association Agreement, Ukraine and Georgia, went further by accepting the European values as benchmarks for the strategic development objectives. Read the rest of this post »

Role of President Dodon for Russia and implications for European integration

Publicate Iunie 22, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: Rusia pretutindeni, UE şi RM

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The Moldovan-Russian relations, as Moldova’s foreign policy, develop continuously in a bi-directional context. On the one hand, the Government and Parliament led by the Democratic Party confirm the commitment to the European agenda. On the other hand, President Igor Dodon and the Party of Socialists insist on the integration into the Eurasian Economic Union and, respectively, the abandonment of the Association Agreement with the EU. At the same time, in statements both of the political forces – the Democrats and the Socialists – highlight that Moldova needs good relations both with the West and with the East and plead for “flexible geopolitics”.

In reality, the relationships with the EU and Russia are antagonized by the government and the Socialist opposition. Thus, the Democrats recently resorted to the expulsion of five Russian diplomats for vaguely formulated reasons. Apparently, the decision to expel the Russian diplomats was determined by the behavior of the diplomats, their proximity to the Transnistrian administration or espionage practices. The penalization of Russian diplomats forms part of a long succession of gestures in relation to Russia, namely banning of access of Russian journalists and experts, who were considered agents of the Russian information war, recommendation for Moldovan officials not to travel to Russia or alleged Russian traces in the controversial murder attempt on Vladimir Plahotniuc’s life. Given his limited powers, President Dodon so far managed to only make accusations against the West (U.S. and EU) for the reason that this would have encouraged the pro-European government to expel Russian diplomats.
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Three scenarios concerning fate of EU macro-financial assistance for Moldova

Publicate Iunie 14, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: UE şi RM

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We are witnessing a unique situation in the EU-Moldova dialogue, when representatives of the European Parliament impose themselves more visibly than other European institutions in relation to the political situation in Chisinau. At the initial stage, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and the European People’s Party committed themselves to persuade other European institutions of the necessity of halting the European assistance if the Democratic Party ruling in Moldova does not abandons the idea of introducing the uninominal voting system. But the political stratagems in Chisinau ramified continuously and this made the MEPs to look for more efficient solutions to constrain the ruling party, which constantly invents new ways of avoiding the European conditionality. In such circumstances, the European Parliament intends to postpone for a month, until June, the approval of the decision about the €100 million in macro-financial assistance (Free Europe, May 2017), intended for Moldova for 2017-2018.

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How did Moldova become a ”captured state”?

Publicate Iunie 9, 2017 de dioniscenusa
Categorii: Moldova corupta, Uncategorized

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Closer to the end of 2014, the expression “state capture” became a kind of country brand for Moldova. The extra-parliamentary opposition regularly used this phrase to describe the defective governance and infiltration of obscure interests into the government. The foreign development partners, with very small exceptions, used more veiled formulas when they spoke about “state capture” in Moldova so as to avoid a direct confrontation with the Moldovan authorities, which would have led to the imminent short-circuiting of the dialogue. Consequently, these used the “powerful politicization of institutions” as an equivalent.

The idea of state capture was assimilated by the public opinion much easier amid the crisis in the banking system unveiled at the end 2014. This way the phrase became a very popular jargon in national journalism. Other criminal activities committed in the period of the so-called pro-European governments (2009-2016), alongside the thefts in the banking system, also started to be associated with the phenomenon of “state capture”.

Habitually, state capture in Moldova is attributed to the leader of the Democratic Party (PDM), controversial businessman Vladimir Plahotniuc. Accusing him of complicity in state capture, the opponents call him “puppeteer”. Namely for this reason, the protests mounted by the pro-European and pro-Russian opposition (RFI, October 2015) in 2015-2016 featured primarily Vladimir Plahotniuc. Ex-Premier Vlad Filat referred to the implications of the “puppeteer” in his last speech in Parliament, before his arrest in October 2015. Read the rest of this post »


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