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Council Conclusions on Moldova

Council Conclusions on the Republic of Moldova (Brussels, 18 February 2008)

Council Conclusions on Relations with the Republic of Moldova

(Brussels, 18 February 2008)

The Council adopted the following conclusions:

"The Council notes the positive dynamics in EU-Republic of Moldova relations over the past 12 months, as witnessed by the entry into force of the Visa Facilitation and Readmission Agreements on 1 January 2008, the opening of a Common Visa Application Centre in Chisinau in April 2007 and the initial contacts between the Commission and the Republic of Moldova with a view to exploring the possibilities for agreeing a pilot mobility partnership within the framework of the global approach to migration. The Council underlines EU efforts to contribute to the conflict settlement in Transnistria, and notes the effective engagement of the EUSR for Moldova in the region and the prolongation of the mandate of the EU Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM) for another two years from 1 December 2007. The Council welcomes the active alignment by the Republic of Moldova with CFSP Declarations and looks forward to the entry into force on 1 March 2008 of the Regulation on granting additional autonomous trade preferences for the Republic of Moldova.

The EU attaches great importance to further strengthening the relationship, and to ensuring the continuation of the process of political and economic reforms in the Republic of Moldova. The Council welcomes the progress made by the Republic of Moldova in the implementation of the ENP Action Plan over the last three years. However, further and continuous efforts are needed in order to strengthen democracy and the rule of law, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of the media, inter alia in the run-up to the parliamentary elections, and to reinforce the fight against corruption, as well as to improve the investment climate, in particular the transparency and predictability of the regulatory framework. In the light of the above, the full respect of the EU-Moldova Partnership and Cooperation Agreement and the ENP Action Plan, notably their investment-related provisions, are of utmost importance.

The Council looks forward to the Commission's Progress Report foreseen for April 2008, which will provide a good opportunity to further evaluate the situation. On the basis of sustained progress in Action Plan implementation, the EU is ready to start reflection on a new agreement with the Republic of Moldova going beyond the PCA."