Moldovan foreign affairs minister says Ireland one of most active backers of Moldova's European aspirations
17:33 | 20.07.2022 Category: Official
Chisinau, 20 July /MOLDPRES/ - Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Affairs and European Integration Minister Nicu Popescu has received Foreign Affairs and Defence Minister of Ireland Simon Coveney, whose visit is taking place in a special historical context for Moldova. He is the first head of a European diplomacy to visit Moldova after the country has got the status of candidate for EU, as well as the first Irish foreign affairs minister coming to Chisinau in the last 19 years, the Foreign Affairs and European Integration Ministry’s (MAEIE) press service has reported.
In his speech, Minister Nicu Popescu stressed that Ireland had conveyed a strong message of support for EU’s extension, being one of the states to actively back Moldova’s aspirations of accession to EU.
„We are determined to transform Moldova for the better, to consolidate the democracy and peace, to improve the justice, to eliminate corruption and reform the economy according to European standards. All these goals are common with our European partners, with the support of institutions and member states of the European Union,’’ the Moldovan official said.
Deputy PM Nicu Popescu also voiced confidence that the country’s European development and the modernization at the European standards would strengthen Moldova’s democratic institutions and would contribute to the consolidation of democracy in the region.
„The results of this cooperation are visible also in the solidarity proved through a more generous opening of the market for the Moldovan products, which will allow exporting larger quantities of products to EU countries without the payment of customs duties. This decision will help our farmers sell their products at competitive prices, generating new, safe and well-paid jobs, in our country,’’ the Moldovan diplomacy head said.
The meeting between the two ministers occasioned discussions on the regional security situation, triggered by Russia’s war against Ukraine, developments in the Transnistrian region, as well as the unprecedented humanitarian crisis underway in the region. In the context, the Moldovan official noted that the large number of refugees hosted by Moldova had stabilized in the last weeks, but remained a challenge in continuation. Popescu stressed that the authorities’ efforts were aimed at providing decent conditions for these innocent people, who were obliged to flee the war.
The interlocutors also referred to the assistance Moldova needs to strengthen the response capacity of the state institutions, such as public order, strengthening the health system, as well as the economic and financial resilience. In the context, the sides highlighted the political solidarity and the important financial support generated at the two Moldova Support Conferences, held in Berlin (5 April) and Bucharest (15 July), an event hosted jointly by Germany, France and Romania.
„In the context that Moldova was given the status of state candidate for European Union, we count on the Irish experience and expertise in more sectoral sectors – economic, social cohesion, agriculture, health, transport, including for the consolidation of the energy security and efficiency of our country,’’ Minister Nicu Popescu said.
The two diplomacy head also tackled aspects on the bilateral dimension of the Moldovan-Irish dialogue, as our Diaspora from Ireland is a strong binder of the friendship between the two countries. Thus, for the benefit of both states, the sides discussed the starting of negotiations for the facilitation of the visa regime with Ireland, advancement of talks for signing the agreement on the conversion of driver’s licences, agreement in the social sector field, agreement on the cutting of tariffs for international roaming, recognition of diplomas, mutual protection and cooperation in the tourism sector.
Note: the European Union stays the principal economic partner of Moldova. In January-May 2022, the value of Moldova’s exports to EU amounted to over 1.2 billion dollars, accounting for 64.4 per cent of all the country’s exports.