President Dalia Grybauskaitė met with the President of Parliament and Acting President of Moldova, Marian Lupu, and Prime Minister Vlad Filat to discuss bilateral relations, cooperation between Moldova and the European Union, Moldova’s progress in implementing fundamental domestic structural reforms, and possible ways of resolving the protracted conflict in Transnistria.
President Grybauskaitė underlined that the democratic development of Eastern Neighborhood and a safe and secure region was in the interest of Lithuania and Europe as a whole.
She pointed out that Moldova, having chosen the path of European integration, launched the necessary reforms to ensure the well-being of the state and its people, but the prolonged constitutional crisis, internal disagreements and the frozen Transnistria conflict were hindering the reform process.
“Europe is opening the door to Moldova, but Moldova has to enter it by itself. It is critically important that stability be ensured, that all political parties and the people of Moldova support the course of European integration and that the pace of fundamental reforms does not slow down,” the President said.
Dalia Grybauskaitė noted that Lithuania was viewed in Moldova as a reliable partner ready to help and assist. Her visit to Moldova has the objective of supporting the country’s European aspirations and convincing its leaders to remove the obstacles on this path.
According to the President, more rapid reforms in law enforcement and customs control, stronger anti-corruption measures and an improved business environment would guarantee stability inside the country, open new opportunities for economic cooperation between Lithuania and Moldova and give an impetus to negotiating a free trade agreement with the European Union.
Lithuania has helped Moldova introduce customs certification and harmonize veterinary standards with EU norms. These projects have allowed the export of Moldovan dairy products to the European Union. Lithuania continues to assist Moldova in implementing the certification of products of plant origin and also in the fields of customs reform, organic farming and sanitation. Lithuanian experts are providing assistance in the process of reforming Moldova’s legal system.
President Grybauskaitė pointed out that the project worked out by Lithuanian experts to renew the transportation of cargo by rail through Transnistria should strengthen bilateral economic cooperation ties, produce positive economic results for both countries and increase cargo shipments by the Viking container train.
The Prime Minister of Moldova informed President Dalia Grybauskaitė about his plans to visit Vilnius this coming autumn together with a delegation of business people to promote contacts between the business communities of both countries.
Lithuania – who currently holds the Chairmanship of the OSCE – places a special focus on frozen conflicts. The President said that the Transnistria conflict was obstructing the successful development of Moldova and had a negative impact on the well-being of the state and its people. In order to find a solution, both conflicting sides should act in good faith, demonstrate a constructive approach and implement confidence building measures, such as restoring telephone connection and abolishing internal customs points that hinder economic development. Lithuania supports Moldova’s aspirations to have official negotiations on the resolution of the Transnistria conflict renewed this autumn.