Dionis Cenușa: When opening borders to countries like Moldova, EU lays emphasis on epidemiological data

When opening its borders to countries like the Republic of Moldova, which have a liberalized visa regime, the EU lays emphasis on the epidemiological data, the way in which the authorities manage the sanitary crisis and the contagion rate. The first relevant list that will be issued by the EU will include about 50 states where the number of cases per 100,000 people does not exceed 16. The second list will appear later and will contain about 60 states where the number of cases per 100,000 people should not exceed 20. It’s not clear if Moldova will be on those lists, Dionis Cenușa, a political scientist, researcher at the Institute of Political Sciences at Liebig-Justus University in Giessen, Germany, stated in a public debate entitled “Movement and place of Moldovan citizens in Europe during and after pandemic: opportunities and risks” that was staged by IPN News Agency.

Dionis Cenușa noted that in the discussions held at the level of governments, the European officials didn’t reveal details about the countries that will be put on those lists, but in the region that includes the Republic of Moldova, Georgia could enter the list of countries eligible to move freely. “The lists haven’t been published yet. The situation is interesting in relation to such countries as the U.S. given the non-uniform management of the crisis. The list can include China and the U.S., not Georgia and Ukraine or Moldova. A clear answer will probably not exist until the middle of July, but the Moldovans who travel by plane should check the websites of airports where they can find detailed information about travel conditions,” he stated.

“Inside the EU, things started to calm down and an increasing number of borders are opened. Initially, emphasis was placed on the reopening of borders to citizens who travel daily to work in the neighboring country, then gradually, depending on the communication of ministers of home affairs of the EU States, each country set its own path and its own calendar for reopening their borders inside the EU.”

IPN’s senior contributor believes the sanitary crisis can be used as an opportunity for stimulating particular actions that are now very costly from political viewpoint. “For example, for the governments to change things so that the citizens become more cooperative, including when they introduce data in epidemiological files, as regards the observance of quarantine and the way in which the businesses are helped,” he said. As to the way in which the EU can help the associate states to overcome the pandemic, the political scientist noted there are differences in the EU’s communication with Ukraine and Georgia and its communication with Moldova. “Moldova is probably in the shadow owing to the poor performance of the authorities or there is a political problem as the government does not enjoy sympathy in the European states. We either change our attitude to the EU or will be disadvantaged in terms of communication,” he opined.

Dionis Cenușa recommends the Moldovans to obey the rules at home as they obey them in the EU, to inform themselves from credible sources, to pay attention to the information published by the EU and to respect the protection measures, such as wearing of masks in public transport or in closed public places.

The debate “Movement and place of Moldovan citizens in Europe during and after pandemic: opportunities and risks” was the 141st installment of the series “Developing political culture through public debates” that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation.

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