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“State secret”: Finance Ministry refuses to publish EU letter “appreciating Moldova’s progress” on €100 mln. pact

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22 May 2018- Newsmaker.md was refused by the Finance Ministry to obtain a copy of the letter of the European Commission on the fulfillment of the first 10 priority actions, necessary for disbursement of the €100 million fund.

Signed by Finance Minister Octavian Armașu, the refusal letter explains to Newsmaker that the letter contains information that is subject to the “state secret” protection due to the national security risks of publishing it.

In March 2018, Armașu declared that the letter from the DG ECFIN (European Commission) appreciated the efforts of the Moldovan authorities on the fulfillment of the first 10 (28, in total) conditions from the agreement on the 100 million euros macro-financial assistance.

This “appreciating” letter was then requested by the Chișinău-based Center for Policy and Reforms (CPR Moldova), but the request was refused on the claim that NGOs cannot request information from the state institutions. Now, CPR Moldova is suing the Finance Ministry for violating the access to information laws, suggesting that an NGO is nothing but an association of individuals, which should freely access information of public interest. Moreover, CPR is asking the Ministry to present a copy of the report on the implementation of the first 10 conditions for the disbursement of the first tranche of those 100 million euros.


On 23 November 2017, the Republic of Moldova signed the agreement with the European Union regarding the macro-financial assistance of 100 million euros: 40 million of grants and 60 million as a loan. The so-called MFA was requested in August 2015 and in March 2016 by the Moldovan authorities. After long debates on the conditionality, the European Parliament, and the EU Council came to an agreement to offer Moldova the macro-financial assistance for 2 years and a half in three tranches, whose disbursement is conditioned by a certain list of criteria. According to the agreement, the European Commission will monitor the progress on key reforms together with the International Monetary Fund.

Currently studying International Relations at the University of Pécs, Hungary. Study focus: Transnistrian conflict settlement, Moldovan statehood, Moldovan democracy. Inquiries at [email protected]

Economy

Good news! A motorway that connects European Union and Republic of Moldova could be built

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On November 7th, the representatives of the Romanian parliament adopted a law that enables the construction of a 318 km long motorway on the territory of Romania. 261 deputies out of 268 voted for promulgating of the respective law.

According to the designed project, the motorway will make the connection between a planned bridge at the border with Republic of Moldova and the A3 motorway Brașov-Borș in the neighbourhood of the city Târgu-Mureș. The most difficult segment of the road to be constructed will lay in the mountain area, where tunnel digging, and viaduct building will be needed.

The total planned cost for the motorway construction is estimated to be four billion dollars. The main financing sources include the Romanian Government budget through the Transportation Ministry budget, external loans, as well as European grants and/or public-private partnerships.

The planned motorway from Targu-Mures to the border of Republic of Moldova| Photo source: realitateafinanciara.net

During the implementation of the project, the yearly government budget law will specify the amount of appropriations that will be allocated to this objective, according to the financial necessities communicated by the Transportation Ministry. The latter will be responsible for the coordination of the works and for starting the procedures required for the investment within 30 days following the date of entry into force of the law.

The law in question was initiated by 70 senators and deputies from all parties that are members of the Romanian parliament. It was especially supported by the members of NLP (National Liberal Party) and SRU (Save Romania Union) that displayed unionist messages like “Moldova asks for the highway” and “The highway of the Great Union.” More information on the topic here.

As the motorways are designed for high speed vehicular traffic, they need a special infrastructure and a higher amount of investments than any other type of roads. In the European Union the number of motorways has tripled in the last 30 years, the most extensive motorway networks being in Germany, France and Spain, according to Eurostat.

Total length of motorways map (km) 2016| Photo source: ec.europa.eu

In Romania, the total length of the motorways is more than 786 km, according to the most recent data and the network is still planned to be extended.

Romania ‘s motorway map 2018| Photo source: 130km.ro

Republic of Moldova has no built motorways until this moment.

Featured photo source: startrescue.co.uk

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Economy

Moldova will receive €30.1 million to strengthen the land system

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Moldova will receive €30.1 million for the land registration and land registration project. Today, the Government approved the draft law for ratification of the Financing Agreement between our country and the International Development Association, signed in Chisinau on 17 September 2018.

The assigned money will be allocated for primary and real estate valuation, consolidation of project management and land management. At the same time, the project will also be based on the current work of the Government and the World Bank on the modernization of the tax administration and government services (eGovernment).

The partnership framework of the Republic of Moldova with the World Bank provides financial support for our country through several instruments.

Until now, the World Bank has allocated over $1 billion to more than 60 projects in various areas.

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Economy

The Moldovan currency passes the Prut river. It will be accepted for foreign exchange and banking transactions in Romania

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The Moldovan Leu will be accepted for foreign exchange and banking transactions in Romania, thanks to the cooperation of the National Bank of Moldova (NBM) with the Romanian Commercial Bank and Banca Transilvania.

The MDL / RON exchange service will be available from October 1, 2018, at the branches and counters of the main Romanian cities. The Romanian Commercial Bank is the sole shareholder of Romanian Commercial Bank of Chişinău S.A., and Banca Transilvania is a major shareholder, together with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), BC “Victoriabank” S.A.

Romania is the first trading partner of the Republic of Moldova, with 26% of exports and 14% of Moldovan imports in the first half of the year.

The widespread acceptance of the Moldovan leu for foreign exchange outside the Republic of Moldova is an important first step and represents an additional step towards strengthening the credibility and convertibility of the national currency.

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