Igor Boțan: Bill to “sell” Moldovan citizenship can have an unimaginable impact

From the perspective of the development of the Republic of Moldova, the citizens should understand that the country  slowly moves in the direction of Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and other similar country models. At the same time, the bill to provide Moldovan citizenship by investment can have an impact that we cannot even imagine. The opinions were stated by expert Igor Boțan in the public debate “Impact of the European Parliament’s Resolution of 14.11.2018 on Moldovan political class and society”, which was the 96th installment of the series of debates “Developing political culture through public debates”, staged by IPN News Agency and Radio Moldova.

The standing expert of IPN’s project said the Republic of Moldova found itself in a very bad situation. On the one hand, the relations with the Russian Federation are bad, marked by the Ukrainian conflict. On the other hand, it dramatically spoiled the relations with the EU. “The citizens should understand that Turkey and the United Arab Emirates are now the main partners of the Republic of Moldova and the shift occurred immediately after July 4, when the payment of the first installment of the EU’s macro-financial assistance for Moldova was suspended. “€100 million is not so much and this is evident and I think that the choice for those who now rule in Moldova was already made. If the EU sticks to its position, other centers of attraction with money and without conditionality elements can be found. For the government, it is very important for the power to be in strong hands and there is the vertical of the power, while justice and democracy are ranked second,” he stated.

According to Igor Boțan, the granting of Moldovan citizenship by investment is a present for those who will buy it for US$ 100,000 as they will be able to buy chernozem in Moldova and this is interesting and attractive for some.

The expert wondered why the provision concerning justice from the EP’s Resolution is surprising to some as the minister of justice of Moldova in January admitted that the justice sector reform failed, as did the leader of the ruling party and thus suggested that the judges should be elected by the people. “If we find this in the Venice Commission’s report, we say this was influenced by some at a time when the government admits that it is to blame. The EU member states have embassies in Chisinau and the heads of state and government of these states are informed about the developments in Moldova from the first source,” he stated.

Igor Boțan also made reference to selective justice, saying very interesting cases are tried and the people want to understand why they are tried behind closed doors

As to the banking fraud, the expert wondered how the MEPs should look at things when there are KROLL reports and the people do not yet know who the real authors are four years after the theft. “The fact that these things are mentioned in the resolution is very serious for the Republic of Moldova because the European officials understand very well what is happening in this country and how this point was reached. The secret protocols by which the state institutions were distributed between the ruling parties, all the developments, collapse of justice and selective justice, the fact that the members of the Government come and listen to the decisions taken by a person who does not hold an official post at least show there are instruments for exerting influence hidden from the people and this is serious,” stated Igor Boțan.

According to him, the European Union is a union of values and if the values are undermined, the EU is obliged, by its institutions, to name things. “Should the EU hide the ugly things that happen in the societies of the associate countries? I think this is the last thing it should do,” noted the expert.

He also said the impact of this resolution is already visible in the Republic of Moldova. “Regrets will be expressed during many years ahead as to the fact that we could not stick to the European course as a country like the Republic of Moldova with an economy that is 25 times lower than the EU’s could have been swiftly helped to move on,” he noted.

The debate “Impact of the European Parliament’s Resolution of 14.11.2018 on Moldovan political class and society” forms part of the series of public debates held by IPN News Agency and Radio Moldova as part of the project “Developing political culture through public debates” that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation of Germany.

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