Popescu: The Moldova-EU Relations Will Be Defined by Two Things

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The next phases in Moldova’s relations with the European Union will be determined by two things – our capacity for reforms and the political will, discussions and dynamics within the EU. The statement was made this evening by Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Nicu Popescu during a program on a public television channel, noi.md reports with reference to radiomoldova.md. The official confirmed that the authorities want to implement the 9 recommendations of the European Commission by the end of this year: “Obviously, we must do our homework. Starting accession negotiations, signing the accession treaty, then joining the Schengen area or joining the Eurozone – each time we will go through these stages when we have to do our homework, and then the member states take the next stage in the relationship with the EU. I can’t tell you exactly what the situation inside the EU will be, what decisions the EU will make, but our goal is absolutely clear – to do all our homework by the end of this year.” The foreign policy chief also stressed that 20 new employees will soon start working at the ministry, and most of them will be working on EU accession cases. “We have a big shortage of specialists. All agencies are working hard to identify, hire and motivate those people who will bring us to the EU in the coming years through the reforms that they will implement. In the same days, the first team of recently hired diplomats will arrive at the Foreign Ministry,” Popescu said. He also stated that despite the difficulties of this year, the dramatic consequences of the war for our country, we managed to advance “key” things for our country. In this sense, the minister noted the importance of international partnership. Thanks to these friends, the Republic of Moldova has been able to provide its citizens with electricity and heat. “It helps us to open markets more accessible to our producers to continue to provide jobs and income to citizens. (...). We were able to stockpile natural gas in Romania and Ukraine, we were able to purchase this natural gas in order to survive this winter without problems, also thanks to the financial support of our partners. Thanks to our European partners, we managed to reduce expenses for our citizens through these grants from the European Commission, which have been announced more than once”, Nicu Popescu said. On March 3, it will be one year since Moldova applied for accession to the European Union. In order to start accession negotiations, our country must fulfill 9 conditions set by the European Commission. Among the most important are the reform of justice and de-oligarchization. In autumn 2023, the Commission will also publish a “supplementary package”, which will also include a report on the progress of Moldova.