Experts condemn the poor pace of reforms in Moldova

On 19 May, a group of well-known Moldovan experts published a report negatively evaluating the Moldovan government’s implementation of its promised pro-European reforms. The experts have highlighted the very weak pace of change. The content of the report undermines the announcement by the Moldovan government that it will launch negotiations with the EU later this year on a deep and comprehensive free trade area (DCFTA).
The report, written by experts from the renowned ADEPT and Expert-Group think-tanks, analyses the progress of the government’s plans and declarations relating to the internal reforms which are designed to bring Moldova up to EU standards; in particular, to enable talks on the DCFTA to start, and abolish visas to the EU for Moldovan citizens. The report’s conclusions are critical for the ruling pro-European coalition; during almost one and a half years, it has failed to make any significant progress in implementing its main aim of carrying out reforms which would bring Moldova closer to the European Union. For example. during the first five months of 2011, the Government has not carried out any of the 81 points of its plan to reform the judiciary. Nor has it succeeded in the reforms which the European Union has demanded as a condition for opening free-trade zone negotiations. The slow pace of reform is due not only to the government’s inefficiency, but also to a lack of consensus within the coalition as to the direction and details of the reforms. Delays in implementing the reforms are likely to prevent negotiations on the free-trade zone opening before the end of this year, and may place the timely introduction of visa-free entry to the EU for Moldovans at risk. <wrod>