Moldova’s president said today (17 January) he hoped the ex-Soviet state’s Association Agreement with the European Union would be cancelled if his party obtains a parliamentary majority, paving the way for an alliance with Moscow.
Speaking after talks with President Vladimir Putin, the new Moldovan leader who won an election in November against a pro-European opponent, said he is seeking “full reestablishment” of economic cooperation with Russia because the EU deal did not bring promised trade.
“This agreement did not bring any positive aspects to Moldova. We lost the Russian market while our exports to the EU also fell,” said Dodon, who symbolically picked Moscow as his first foreign trip as president.
“I don’t rule out that after the next parliament polls this will be the position of the parliamentary majority, and I will support this position,” he said.
He said he hoped the Socialist Party he had led “will get a parliamentary majority and that this agreement will be annulled”.
Moldova’s parliamentary polls are scheduled for late 2018.
Dodon made it clear he will seek to prepare the paperwork for joining the Moscow-led Eurasian Economic Union while also aiming to improve conditions for trade with Europe.
Moldova is wedged between Ukraine and Romania and has an East-West cultural and linguistic split similar to Ukraine. One of Europe’s poorest states, it is plagued by corruption.
Dodon said he agreed with Putin to begin talks on signing a “framework memorandum” on cooperation with the Eurasian Economic Union, but also plans to speak with EU officials and “show them the figures” on a visit to Brussels in February that will be his second foreign trip.