EU aid to Moldova made little difference: ECA

2 September 2016
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The €782m of EU aid intended to strengthen public administration in Moldova has had minimal effects, the European Court of Auditors concluded following a report into the EU’s budget support programmes. Hans Gustaf Wessberg, the member of the ECA responsible for the report, explained that the EU “faces significant challenges” in implementing assistance for Moldova, noting that the “combination of political and economic instability, weak governance and public administration significantly reduces the European Commission’s leverage to encourage reform”.


Romania releases loan tranche to assist Moldovan recovery

24 August 2016
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Romania paid the first tranche of a multi-million Euro loan to Moldova, in a bid to help the nation maintain a pro-European course. Earlier this year, the Romanian government pledged to lend Moldova €150 million to help it push through anti-corruption reforms after the nation was rocked by a massive scandal in 2015. The country has been in political turmoil since the disappearance of €888 million from its leading bank in 2014. Faced with hostile public opinion, the new pro-EU administration of Prime Minister Pavel Filip vowed to bring greater transparency to the finance sector — a key condition to secure a deal with the IMF and unlock crucial EU aid.


Central Bank officials detained in money laundering investigation

5 August 2016
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Three current and former officials from Moldova’s central bank were detained by prosecutors in relation to investigations into money laundering by the National Anti-corruption Centre. The three officials detained by Moldovan prosecutors are Emma Tabarta, a former vice-governor of the central bank dismissed in April 2015 after the scandal of the banking frauds broke, the head of the central bank’s bank supervision department Matei Dohotaru and Vladimir Turcanu, the head of the central bank’s department that authorises banks' operations.


GRECO report calls for significant improvements in tackling corruption

30 July 2016
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The Council of Europe’s anti-corruption body GRECO called on Moldova to improve and to ensure the effective implementation of anti-corruption legislation in respect of parliamentarians, judges and prosecutors. GRECO’s report identified the inconsistent application of anti-corruption laws and the lack of independence of corruption-fighting institutions as key problems which must be addressed swiftly.


Inaugural anti-corruption hackathon attracts youth engagement

11 July 2016
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An inaugural anti-corruption “hackathon” event was held in Chisinau under the initiative of the United Nations Development Programme and with the financial support of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. During the event, teams worked to conceptualise and develop innovative solutions to engage citizens to report corruption and to encourage authorities to meaningfully fight the stigma. Attended by over fifty participants, the winners were awarded $10,000 and were selected to be coached by mentors to help develop their winning idea for public use.
 


EU Association Agreement paves way for improved governance

1 July 2016
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 Following two years of negotiations, the Association Agreement between the European Union and the Republic of Moldova entered into force on July 1. Aiming to deepen political and economic relations between the EU and Moldova, it also offers the nation a framework for boosting trade and economic growth as well as access to the EU market for products and services. If implemented completely, it will facilitate Moldova’s progressive integration within the EU single market. At the signing event, EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn called for more to be done in the country to effectively address corruption and improve governance.


Mayor detained on suspicion of money laundering

30 June 2016
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Prosecutors have detained businessman Ilan Shor, mayor of Orhei, on suspicion of money laundering connected to the disappearance of $1 billion from three Moldovan banks in 2014.


Russia not helping to recover stolen banking assets

8 June 2016
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Moldovan Prime Minister Pavel Filip said that Russia was not offering enough help to his government to track down and recover $1 billion that was siphoned from the banking system. The Prime Minister has said that some countries, for example in Baltics, are working really well with Moldova in order to trace down the assets, however Russia is not one of them. He, also, outlined a series of reform measures to restore public confidence in the political system, such as changing the mandate of the anti-corruption agency to focus only on high-level cases.


Protesters demand snap elections and government’s resignation

24 April 2016
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Protests continued in Chisinau demanding the resignation of the government and new elections. Thousands of people joined the rally staged by the right-wing Dignity and Truth Platform Party, the Liberal Reformist Party and the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova, with protestors accusing the government of being heavily dependent on local oligarchs and for being slow in its efforts to integrate the nation into the EU.


Leading Moldovan pharmaceutical firm under scrutiny for Bosnian links

21 April 2016
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One of Moldova’s leading firms in the pharmaceutical sector, Dita Estfarm, is being investigated in relation to its links with Bosnian pharmaceutical company, Bosnalijek. The Bosnian company saw seven officials arrested last year following accusations of money laundering, tax evasion and forgery and subsequent examinations by the Financial Police in Sarajevo have uncovered suspicious dealings between the two companies dating back to 2006.


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