The Republic of Moldova has close ties with the EU, but abuse of rule of law and democratic principles puts that relationship in danger. The country is part of the EU’s Eastern Partnership policy. It is implementing an association agreement with the EU, aiming at political association and economic integration. The EU has become its main trading partner and development aid donor and, since April 2014, Moldovan citizens can also travel to the EU without a visa. However, Moldova faces a number of key challenges, including a lack of respect for the rule of law, the absence of an independent and effective functioning judiciary, corruption, and controlled state institutions by the ruling Democratic Party.
It also faces shrinking space for civil society, the absence of a free and fair competitive democratic environment, and limited political will to pursue a real reform agenda that goes beyond catering to vested interests.
The June 2018 decision by Moldovan courts (also confirmed by the Central Electoral Commission) to cancel the results of the vote in early local elections for the Mayor of Chisinau – the vote was won by Andrei Nastase, one of the leaders of pro-reform opposition parties – threatens the functioning of democratic institutions in Moldova.
Full Article: Moldova’s election to test EU credentials.