EU differently treats ‘state capture’ phenomenon in Moldova and Georgia, opinion

Even if political systems based on political subordination of institutions, deactivation of the system of ”control and balance” and interference by oligarchic interests are seen both in Moldova and Georgia, the EU tends to differently treat the ‘state capture’ phenomenon, political pundit Dionis Cenusa wrote in an analysis article for IPN Agency.

The expert noted that the destructive actions of Vladimir Plahotniuc’s regime attract more attention in Brussels than the actions that can be associated with the informal involvement of Ivanishvili. Thus, it seems that some of the oligarchs are more “useful” than others in the countries associated with the EU.

Dionis Cenusa said the differentiated EU approaches to the Moldovan case and the Georgian one are based on several reasons.

First of all, Ivanishvili’s regime is democratic and was formed as a result of elections, even if these were based on the mixed system that favored the “Georgian Dream”. The political power accumulated by Plahotniuc was formed by unclear schemes and by influencing MPs to become members of the PDM.

The second important aspect is related to the number and gravity of the deviations committed by the regime associated with Ivanishvili and the one associated with Vladimir Plahotniuc. The banking fraud and the slow investigation into this, concentration of the media market, monopolization schemes (Metal Feros based on scrap metal, Trans-Oil based on grains, etc.), criminal cases that feature Vladimir Plahotniuc Plahotniuc etc., strengthen the European institutions’ undeclared opposition to the government led by Vladimir Plahotniuc. The invalidation of the Chisinau mayoral elections (June 2018), mixed electoral system (July 2017), capital amnesty and decriminalization of economic offenses can be added to these.

The third aspect is the participation by the antigovernment opposition of Moldova (PAS, Platform “Dignity and Truth”, PLDM) in the family of the European People’s Party (EPP), which regularly attacks the oligarchic regime led by the leader of the PDM Vladimir Plahotniuc.

Even if the EPP has among its ranks the main Georgian opposition party (United National Movement), the criticism of this group is less intense and visible. At the same time, even if the EPP condemned the gestures of the parliamentary majority controlled by Ivanishvili as regards the replacement of the electoral system, this does not describe these actions as derivatives of the oligarchization of the political power and, respectively, of ‘state capture, concluded the expert.