Overview

EU Assistance to Moldova

Background

The European Union is a major donor to the Republic of Moldova and has allocated more than €1 billion to Moldova since 1991.

The latest 2011-13 National Indicative Programme (NIP) has an indicative amount of €273.14 million financed under the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI). This includes the €41.16 million earmarked for the Eastern Partnership Comprehensive Institution Building programme (CIB), which is an ‘Agreement-driven’ programme intended to assist Moldova with institution building for a number of core institutions that are central in preparing the ground for and implementing the future EU-Moldova Agreement. In addition, € 6.98 million have been reserved for Cohesion Policy. The overall objectives of bilateral EU assistance for Moldova are agreed in the Country Strategy Paper (2007-2013).

Under this National Indicative Programme, assistance will focus on the following priority areas and programmes (sub-priorities), which reflect the extent of our cooperation with Moldova as well as the EU’s leading position in providing assistance to Moldova:

Priority Area 1: Good governance, rule of law and fundamental freedoms
Sub-priority area 1: Rule of law, human rights and security
Sub-priority area 2: Public administration reform
Sub-priority area 3: Facilitation of new EU-Moldova Agreement
Priority Area 2: Social and human development
Sub-priority area 1: Social protection
Sub-priority area 2: Health system reform
Sub-priority area 3: Labour market reform & education
Priority Area 3: Trade and sustainable development
Sub-priority area 1: Facilitation of deep and comprehensive FTA
Sub-priority area 2: Regional and local development
Sub-priority area 3: Environment & energy efficiency / renewable energy and Diversification

Major highlights

 

Annual EU assistance from its bilateral programmes for Moldova was €40 million from ENPI 2007, €62.3 million from ENPI 2008, €57 million from ENPI 2009,  €66 million from ENPI 2010 , €78 million from ENPI 2011, €94 million from ENPI 2012, plus €28 million from EaPIC 2012 and €100 million is expected from ENPI 2013.

The following sector budget support operations, incl. technical assistance and pilot project components, are currently on-going, or in advanced preparatory stages:

  • ENPI 2007 Social Assistance Sector Policy Support Programme with a budget of €21million for Moldova. The programme assisted the Government of Moldova in the design and the implementation of sound macro-economic policies as well as of a social assistance policy addressing the issue of extreme poverty in an effective and efficient manner.

    The programme sees concrete success in the roll-out of the new cash-benefit system for the poorest parts of the population (currently 33.000 beneficiary families). Also, under this programme, the EU supported the Moldovan authorities in handling the energy-related tariffs increase, by providing €2.4 million support for most vulnerable layers of population.
  • ENPI 2008 Health Sector Policy Support Programme with a budget of €52.6 million for Moldova. The overall objective is to reinforce EU-Moldova cooperation for addressing the health priorities of the EU-Moldova Action Plan to support the concrete prioritisation and implementation of the Moldovan Health Sector Strategy 2008-2017 towards improving the health of population, expanding access, and improving the efficiency and quality of essential public health services.
  • ENPI 2009 Water Sector Policy Support Programme with a budget of €50 million for Moldova. The main objective of this Sector Policy Support Programme is to support Moldova in the implementation of reforms in its drinking water and sanitation sector, by providing finance, technical assistance and policy dialogue for priority activities of high-relevance for the Moldovan population and environment.
  • ENPI 2010 Policy Support Programme for Economic Stimulation of Rural Areas with a budget of €59 million (including a €3 million technical assistance component) for Moldova. The programme is to a large extent structured upon the Economic Stabilisation and Recovery Programme for 2009-2011. The objective of this Sector Policy Support Programme (SPSP) is to contribute to the sustainable economic development of rural areas in the Republic of Moldova.
  • ENPI 2011 Policy Support Programme for the Reform of the Energy Sector in Moldova with a budget of €42.6 million (including €2.6 million technical assistance component). The main objective of the Programme is to support the reform of the energy sector and to facilitate technical improvements in its operation. The Programme aims at helping Moldova to achieve the objectives of the Energy Strategy approved in 2007 and updated in 2012. This budget support operation will give a significant boost to the implementation of the Energy Strategy, with special focus on the Energy Efficiency Action Plan (including identification of investment projects), harmonisation of primary and secondary legislation in the Energy Community Treaty context, establishing methodologies for the setting of energy tariffs at cost- and investment-recovery level and implementing these tariffs, promotion of energy efficiency and renewable energy and development and implementation of dedicated financing mechanisms.
  • ENPI 2012 Policy Support Programme to the Justice Sector reforms with a budget of €60 million. The main objective of the sector policy support programme is to support the Moldovan Government in implementation of the Justice Sector Reform Strategy (December 2011) and the Action Plan on its fulfilment (March 2012). The overall objective of the Justice Sector Reform Strategy is to build an accessible, efficient, independent, transparent, professional justice sector, with high public accountability and consistent with European standards, to ensure the rule of law and protection of human rights. Thus, the Programme's aim was to focus on the achievement of the expected results in the following key areas: (1) sector reform management; (2) reform of the judiciary; (3) reform of pre-trial investigation and prosecution process; (4) reform of the enforcement of courts' decisions process; (5) improvement of the juvenile justice system; (6) ensure intolerance towards corruption in the justice sector. As part of the "more for more" funds for AAP 2012, an 8 million EUR top-up to the Sector Budget Support to the Justice Sector has been allocated. As a result, additional expected results have been added in the area of measures of improvement of the human rights protection in Moldova.
  • For ENPI 2013 two budget support operations are being under consideration.

The first one is support to the implementation of the Vocational Education Training Strategy in the amount of €25 million. The objective of this budget support is to modernize and streamline the Vocation Education and Training in the Republic of Moldova in order to increase the competitiveness of the national economy, by training competent and qualified workforce, in line with current and future requirements of the market.

The second budget support operation is the Support to Implementation of Visa Liberalisation Action Plan in the amount of €21 million. The overall objective of this Programme is to contribute to the improvement of the mobility of Moldovan nationals, while ensuring public order and security, consolidating the rule of law and strengthening human rights protection in line with European standards and best comparative practices. This support will directly contribute to good governance by improving the work of public institutions and management of public resources. It will also directly contribute to ensuring respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. In addition, in preparation of activities, attention will be paid to ensure gender equality, impact on environment and sustainable development.

  • The sector budget support instrument has proven to be adequate in the Moldovan context and it is also the preferable assistance instrument for the Government as it offers flexibility for and strengthens the ownership of the Moldovan authorities over support provided, making EU assistance more efficient.
  • Future challenges include the management of complex and politically sensitive projects and the even stronger integration of European integration issues, incl. people-to-people, infrastructure, trade, norms and standards into the portfolio.