Pro-Moldova promises. IPN Experts

President Igor Dodon started again to make promises to persuade us that only the victory of the Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova (PSRM) in the parliamentary elections of February 24, 2019 can shape the pro-Moldova project. The whole propagandistic machinery of the PSRM was employed to spread the President’s promises. In a special edition on NTV channel in the evening of November 6, 2018, the President told about the discussions he had with the President of Russian Federation Vladimir Putin during his official visit to Moscow. Even if no document was signed, the President spoke about the success of his visit and made three promises:

- Russia will abolish the customs duties for Moldovan agricultural products for a period of only half a year (January 1 – July 1, 2019);
- will eventually solve the problem of Moldovan migrants working in Russia;
- will eventually provide massive support, of US$ 1 billon, for infrastructure projects.

These promises will eventually be fulfilled only after July 1, 2019, on condition that the parliamentary elections are won by the PSRM. If the President, after an official visit to the Russian Federation, which has a free trade agreement with the Republic of Moldova, comes with promises conditioned by the electoral victory of the PSRM, he is evidently the given party’s electoral agent.

Such behavior is already outdated and in a state of degradation. The idea is Igor Dodon, before the parliamentary elections of November 30, 2014, also promised to solve the problem of Moldovans working in Russia and that Moldova would join the Customs Union. For the citizens to believe him, all over the country he set up electoral billboards showing him near President Vladimir Putin. As the PSRM didn’t win the parliamentary elections of 2014, Igor Dodon made the same promises in two years, before the presidential elections of 2016. Only after being elected President, Igor Dodon discovered that he does not have powers to deliver his promises and he learned about this from President Vladimir Putin on January 17, 2017, during his visit to Moscow. Now, before the parliamentary elections of February 24, 2019, he comes again practically with the same promises.

What should we deduce from the President’s promises given the aforementioned experience? Only one thing – not the interstate documents, such as the free trade agreement, between Moldova and Russia form the basis of the bilateral relations, but the party and personal interests of Mister Igor Dodon. To be correct, we should mention a particular flexibility in the President’s more recent promises. So, the PSRM’s victory in the upcoming parliamentary elections remains a sine qua non condition for the eventual normalization of the Moldovan-Russian relations, but the President seems to have given up insisting on the necessity of scarping the Association Agreement with the EU even if the PSRM’s political program centers on the annulment of the Association Agreement with the EU and the entry into the Eurasian Union. President Dodon can no longer attack the Free Trade Agreement with the EU without attacking the similar agreement with Turkey and this can be an explanation for such behavior. It is curious, but namely Turkey invades the Moldovan market with agricultural products that are cheaper than those of the Moldovan produces, making these uncompetitive. The truth is after the generous presents made by President Erdogan and the “barter” with the Turkish teachers, it is not convenient for President Dodon to address the given problem. He knows that the EU pledged to sign the DCFTA with Moldova only if this committed itself to sign a similar agreement with Turkey. We see that the personal interests prevail over the state ones not only in the relations with Russia, but also in those with Turkey, which hospitably accommodated the President’s family during a vacation on the Mediterranean seaside.

In such circumstances, at the recent Crans Montana forum, President Dodon made promises to the Western leaders too, saying the strategy for Moldova’s entry into the European Union is being prepared so that it is put into practice when the opportune moment comes. Until then, the President’s project, alongside the PSRM, will be simply and elegantly called pro-Moldova. This will actually be a weathercock project and the promises will come from the direction from which the wind will bring propagandistic and other kinds of benefits. 

IPN Experts

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