The Defense spending of Moldova, which has a neutral status according to the Constitution, will be increased for about 25 percent in 2016, the Chairman of Moldova’s Parliament Andrian Candu said. The draft of the national budget was approved by the parliament in the second reading with a six-month delay.
- “We will continue to work with the civil society and democratic opposition in Moldova to help the country get back on track for social and democratic cohesion,” Gabriele Zimmer stressed.
From her point of view, the economic and social situation in Moldova is very bad for the ordinary citizens.
- “A large part of the population lives in severe poverty. Many Moldavians, especially young and educated people, leave the country to work elsewhere, be it in Russia or in an EU member state, which causes a harmful brain drain. At the same time, Moldova suffers from an oligarchic system that is the biggest obstacle to economic and social development. Oligarchs control most of the political parties, the judicial system, and the media. The banking scandal of the ‘vanished billion’ that provoked mass protests in November 2014 is just an extreme example of this unscrupulous state capture by mafia elites,” the politician said.
According to Galina Selari, Executive Director at Center for Strategic Studies and Reforms (CISR) in Chisinau, political and economic situation in Moldova is very unstable today.
- “The country feels some changes are coming, but subconsciously understands that there won’t be any positive shifts. The economy is stagnating. Despite some positive statistics, indicating some growth in industry and agriculture, the consumer prices during the same period increased by 10%. Export is steadily declining. For the first time in recent years, the volume of supply is reduced not only to the CIS market – the fact we got use to – but also to the EU market. The weather does not allow making any positive forecasts: it is already clear that the results of the agricultural year will be very modest,” the expert said.
According to her, the government has to borrow abroad, because it is not able to solve the problems of macroeconomic stabilization and finance its priority commitments to the citizens.
- “The issue of external budget support is directly related to the resumption of financial relations with the IMF, and, consequently, the policy of stabilization and reforms should be agreed with the Fund. To date the Moldovan economy is more than ever determined by the policy. Sometimes the government just does not have enough time to discuss economic issues. For example, parliament is only being prepared to discuss the third reading of the draft of the national budget for the current 2016 year. They’ll think about its possible results tomorrow, and they’ll not think of the budget for 2017 at all,” Galina Selari added.
In turn, Bogdan Tardea, the political scientist, MP from the Socialist Party of Moldova, suggested that the economy of the state is “on the brink of the abyss.”
- “In first quarter of 2016, the total volume of exports decreased by 14.5%, the volume of transported goods by 13.8%, real wages by 4.9%. General budget revenues decreased by 9.4%. Health care costs decreased by 42%, spending on education fell by 14%. The state budget deficit has grown by 6.8 times, and it is covered exclusively through internal borrowing, which resulted in the internal public debt increasing by almost 1 billion lei (about 50 million dollars) in first quarter of 2016. The government, which has no external funding and investment, decided to borrow from banks to pay pensions and salaries. The new draft of the national budget includes about 10 billion lei (more than 500 million dollars) of external loans. This has happened for the first time in the history of the country,” the deputy said.
According to him, the current government lacks popular support.
- “The level of confidence in the government, president’s office and parliament is 10–12%. The government of Pavel Filip, controlled by oligarch Vladimir Plahotniuc, has the US support. The country is coming under external control:Washington openly imposed the government of Pavel Filip, despite of many months protests of the united opposition. There are Romanian consultants in every governing institution; the country participates in many NATO military exercises. In 2016, the EU-Moldova Association Council has started its work, actually becoming the body of the external governance,” Bogdan Tardea said.
However, in his opinion, the main threat for Moldova is the potential unification with Romania.
- “They have started a powerful process of Moldova’s ‘Romanization.’ Romanian newspapers, TV channels, institutions and NGOs openly promote the idea of destroying Moldovan statehood. Some parties aggressively impose the idea that unification with Romania will speed up the accession to the EU and improve the financial status of citizens. There are persons with Romanian citizenship even in parliament, government, president’s office and the Constitutional Court. Almost every month, Romanian elite push the road maps for Moldova’s Anschluss; the question of unification is openly discussed in Moldova. After eight or ten years the Republic of Moldova may disappear from the political map,” the politician concluded.
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