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Statements by Moldovan premier, US Secretary of State at briefing in Washington

Statements by Moldovan premier, US Secretary of State at briefing in Washington

Secretary of State John Kerry:

Good afternoon! I want to wholeheartedly welcome Moldovan Prime Minister Iurie Leanca to Washington, in this snowy day. He welcomed me to Moldova, when I paid a wonderful visit in last December and then I invited him to come here to continue our discussion.

The prime minister promotes the reforms in Moldova. We are very contented with the fact that they continue efforts to sign the Association Agreement with the European Union. We are happy to announce today that the USA will provide Moldova with additional funds, in order to back the country’s efforts to increase competitiveness, which is the key to the development of the business environment and economy. We will supplement the aid with another 2.8 million dollars, additionally to those 4.7 million previously announced – about 7.5 million dollars in all, in order to help them in this transition period. The United States have offered very significant economic assistance of almost 1.5 billion dollars during this time. We are very interested in helping Prime Minister Leanca in his efforts to continue the anticorruption initiatives in Moldova and we are very, very enthusiastic about the way he and his government rule, edifying with determination the future of his country and clearly showing that they want to become part of an enlarged mechanism of the world trade.

While in Moldova, I had the occasion to visit a truly remarkable wine factory, a rather spectacular underground construction. This branch is one of the most important from the export viewpoint and we are impressed by their prospects and capacity to expand this market.

There are challenges too. I ascertain with regret that Russia made pressures on Moldova against the background of the provocations in Ukraine. It is about their energy sources and capacity to make trade exchanges. But we firmly committed to back the development path the Moldovan citizens and government had chosen to follow.

Obviously, we will also refer to the situation in the neighbouring region, Ukraine, as well as to the events unfolding there. I am eagerly waiting to have a very constructive talk, especially that I leave for Kiev today evening and I am very grateful to the prime minister for the possibility to discuss before this visit. Thank you!

Prime Minister Iurie Leanca:

Dear Mr. Secretary of State, I am glad to be again in Washington, I am also glad to be again at the State Department. And I thank you very much for this invitation and possibility to discuss the bilateral relations.

I am extremely grateful to the USA’s administration and American people for the generous support offered during almost 23 years of independence, in order to build functional institutions and a pluralist and tolerant society, assuring you that we are capable to show Moldovan citizens the benefits of independence.

Today, we are ready to launch a Strategic Dialogue, which I am sure will be an extremely important element to build a more functional and democratic society in Moldova, as well as to approach direct challenges faced by Moldova and the countries from the region.

I am very happy that we have managed to resume the work of the United States-Moldova Joint Commercial Commission, as we are really very interested in extending access to new markets, including the U.S. market, in order to get more American investments into the Moldovan economy. And the answer we got from the American authorities today is extremely promising, and so we are very interested in discussing this aspect.

Certainly, we want to launch a strategic dialogue at the governmental level, in order to ensure the activity of working groups on various aspects, including the energy area. Moldova wants very much to build the energy interconnection with the European Union and the American support is essential to this end. The same thing also refers to the cooperation in the security sector. As we see, negative evolutions take place in the region at present. Therefore, we decided to have a very efficient cooperation and dialogue in the security field.

As for the problems in Ukraine that you have also underlined, dear Mr. Secretary of State. Since Moldova is Ukraine’s neighbour, despite the small size of the country, we have a common 1,242-km-long border with Ukraine and, certainly, everything that happens in Ukraine is extremely important for Moldova and Moldova’s future.

We are deeply worried about what happens in Ukraine. In Moldova, unfortunately, from the first day of independence, there were secessionist movements and we know exactly what separatism means. Unfortunately, we have not been able to find an appropriate solution as yet. Therefore, what presently happens in Ukraine is a reminder for us, first of all, but shows also our friends that we must do more, in order to solve this crisis, as if it is not solved in time, it will become very contagious. And that is why what happens in Crimea today, in some eastern regions of Ukraine, is a sad memory. So, Moldova speaks out for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and we hope very much that all international mechanisms will be applied and a peaceful solution to this conflict will be found.

Mr. Secretary of State, I highlight once again that I am happy to be here. I appreciate very much our dialogue. We remember your visit to Chisinau, but also in the cellars where we tasted the excellent Moldovan wine. And I hope very much that American consumers will have the chance to know the excellent taste of the Moldovan wine in the near future.

Secretary of State John Kerry:

And we hope as well, I am sure about this. I do not think it will be difficult. Thank you very much!


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