Romanian Center for European Policies (CRPE) together with its partners – Foreign Policy Association (APE) and the European Policy Centre (EPC) launched on Thursday in Brussels, during the event “EU integration – Moldova’s irreversible choice”, the report “Helping Moldova stay on the EU course. Proposals for a real ‘more for more’ approach”.
The debate was attended by senior governmental officials from Romania and Moldova, diplomats from the European institutions, experts and think tank experts from across the EU.
After more than three years of intense negotiations, Republic of Moldova initialled in Vilnius the Association Agreement (AA) and the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) with the EU, being the first country in the Eastern Partnership to successfully meet all the requirements of the Visa Liberalisation Action Plan.
Thus, 2014 may prove to be a make or break year for Moldova, with Chisinau facing a number of serious challenges. From the EU’s point of view, it could also prove to be a make or break year for the Eastern Partnership.
The period following Vilnius should be a soul-searching time for the EU. Of the three pillars (AA, DCFTA, visa regime) of the Eastern Partnership, two are now being openly challenged by Russia. While the EU should not engage in a populist competition with Russia, it does need to adapt its actions to the realities on the ground.
In this Policy Brief, Cristian Ghinea, Amanda Paul and Victor Chirila argue that the EU should work for greater visibility, better public diplomacy and deliver visible, tangible benefits to the Moldovan population as rapidly as possible. Not only will this help counter Russian activities, but it will also help shore up support for pro-EU reformers in the country.
The full report is available on the www.eumoldovadialogue.eu platform, which comprises the latest analysis and commentaries from experts in all Member States about the outlook for the EU – Republic of Moldova dialogue.
This report is published in the framework of the “EU- Republic of Moldova Think Tank Dialogue”, which is financed by the Official Development Assistance Unit of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in partnership with United Nations Development Programme – Bratislava Regional Office.