5th round of EU-Republic of Moldova Association Agreement Plenary negotiations (17/02/2011)
Today in Brussels, the European Union and the Republic of Moldova held the fifth round of negotiations, in plenary format, of the new Association Agreement.
Both sides recalled that negotiations on the Association Agreement were launched a year ago in Chisinau. The very successful outcome of negotiations so far reflects the positive evolution of political and economic relations between the EU and the Republic of Moldova, and the opportunity to widen and deepen cooperation under the Eastern Partnership.
At the end of today’s Plenary meeting, both sides reported broad agreement on the Preamble, Objectives and General Principles of the Agreement as well as on some key Institutional Provisions. Both sides also endorsed agreement reached by technical experts on cooperation in a number of specific areas including energy, financial assistance and social affairs. Provisions referring to public administration reform and Children’s rights were also agreed in principle.
The EU negotiating team was led by Miroslav Lajčák, Managing Director of the European External Action Service. Natalia Gherman, Deputy Foreign Minister, led for the Republic of Moldova.
The EU reaffirmed its objective to negotiate and establish a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), when the relevant conditions are met, and underlined the importance for the Republic of Moldova to carry out the necessary reforms.
The Association Agreement will create a new contractual framework for EU-Moldova relations, replacing the Partnership and Co-operation Agreement which entered into force in 1998.
The future agreement will deepen the political association and economic integration of the Republic of Moldova and the EU. Its principal objective will be to draw Moldova closer to the EU through commitments across a range of areas, based on a strong degree of approximation to EU laws and standards. These areas will include enhancing political cooperation, reinforcing joint measures in migration, asylum, border management, drugs and crime, expanding economic relations, and increasing co-operation in critical sectors such as energy, environment, transport and public health, with a direct impact on citizens' daily lives and on the business environment.