Chisinau, 18 March 2013 – "It is vital that the country re-establishes political stability in order not to jeopardise the progress made in rapprochement to the EU and in the successful reforms concerning rule of law and democracy", State Secretary Reinhold Lopatka said during his visit to Moldova where he met with Foreign Minister Iurie Leanca and Deputy Foreign Minister Nathalia Gherman for political talks. "We hope that a new government will be established soon so that the pro-European course of Moldova can be continued." The government under Filat failed because of a vote of no confidence on 5 March.
Moldova is one of the pioneers in the EU's Eastern Partnership, and a conclusion of the negotiations about the association agreement with the EU is within reach. "Austria supports the ambitious goal of the Moldavian government, i.e. to complete the wording of the contract by the summit of the Eastern Partnership in Vilnius this coming autumn", Lopatka said.
Austria and Moldova enjoy close and regular exchange at government and parliamentary level. The two countries also cooperate closely in their steps against human trafficking. "Austria supports two projects geared at improving voluntary return and re-integration of Moldovan citizens", Lopatka said.
And economic relations have been deepened, too. Austrian companies are interested in intensifying their involvement in Moldova. "In the first six months of 2012, Austrian exports to Moldova increased by as much as 88 percent", the State Secretary said. "So far, our companies have focused on the services sector in Moldova." According to Lopatka, the improvement of investment conditions, in the field of legal certainty for example, is a prerequisite for further Austrian companies to enter the market. Tourism is a promising area where more joint projects could be carried out. He continued to say that soft loans should also be increasingly used.
Another item on the agenda was the still unresolved Transnistria conflict. All parties – the parties to the conflict Moldova and Transnistria, the mediators Russia, Ukraine and the OSCE as well as observers from the USA and the EU – are called upon to make constructive contributions to this process. The regular meetings in this format are a viable basis for the search for solutions. "Vienna is in any case ready to host the talks under the Ukrainian chairmanship of the OSCE", Lopatka told his partners in Moldova.
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