Senator Corlatean asking EU to liberalise visas for Moldovan nationals

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Chairman of the Romanian Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs Titus Corlatean has requested the Swedish Presidency of the European Union and other officials of various EU institutions that they agree on a schedule of high-level official meetings with political leaders from the Republic of Moldova immediately after the new democratic power structures in Moldova are in place, insisting on the liberalisation of visas and free circulation for Moldovan nationals.

Corlatean was in Visby, Sweden, September 6-7, to attend a conference of chairs of parliamentary committees on external affairs (COFAC) of the member states of the European Union, organised by the Swedish Presidency of the European Council.

In a press release issued on Tuesday, Corlatean is said to have told the meeting that in order to get as tight a relationship between Moldova and the EU member states, Romania included, as possible a decision should be taken, among others, that the visa requirements abusively imposed by the former Moldovan communist regime on Romanian national travelling to Moldova be lifted.

According to the release, Corlatean informed the other chairmen of the political developments in the Republic of Moldova, including the fact that after the July 29 election there an Alliance for European Integration was set up made consisting of four democratic, pro-Europe political parties that has designated the new chairman of Parliament and that provides a necessary majority for the establishment of a clearly pro-Europe government.

Corlatean also said that he has kept close contact with the leaders of these political parties, who confirmed to him that they see the relationship with the EU and its member states as a top priority and that they are ready to start off the democratic, legislative and institutional reforms allowing Moldova to walk on a European path.

In his speech to the meeting, Corlatean mentioned that the social and economic state of Moldova inherited from the communist regime is difficult, insisting that the EU member states should act rapidly to assist Moldova politically and financially.

The release says the reaction of Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt was of full openness and support and he assured that the Swedish Presidency of the EU will take concrete action to support Moldova.

Conversations with chairs of committees on external affairs of the EU member states focused on bilateral relations, the demarche to back up Romania’s bid for a European commissioner office, the agriculture portfolio as a priority, the need to put an end to the European Commission monitoring Romania, as well as the latest developments in the Republic of Moldova.

Corlatean and Chairman of the Committee on External Affairs of the Hungarian Parliament Zsolt Nemeth agreed to meet in a private meeting to assess the latest developments in and the prospects for the relationship between Romania and Hungary after this autumn’s presidential election in Romania and the April 2010 parliamentary election in Hungary.

Corlatean’s visit to Budapest for the meeting should be scheduled for late October.

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