Espreso. Global

EU should create version of 'Marshall Plan' to finance development of Moldova, Ukraine - Sandu

29 April, 2024 Monday
18:57

Moldovan President Maia Sandu says that the EU should develop an 'equivalent' version of the US World War II Marshall Plan to finance development projects in Moldova and Ukraine

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This is reported by Euractive.

"Just as Western Europe was offered an economic lifeline after the Second World War by the American Marshall Plan, Moldova and Ukraine need a tightly focused 21st-century equivalent from the European Union," Sandu said at the EU's annual budget conference in Brussels.

Signed by former US President Harry Truman in 1948, the Marshall Plan - named after then-Secretary of State George Marshall - provided billions of dollars in economic aid to European countries devastated by World War II.

It is noted that Moldova, which, along with Ukraine, received the green light last year to start negotiations on EU accession, has the second lowest GDP per capita in Europe.

"The Marshall Plan was designed to show to an exhausted continent that capitalism and democracy were a better way forward than anything offered by Communism. Today’s modern version will also need to offer similar hope to those of us working our way towards EU membership," the Moldovan president added.

Sandu has repeatedly stressed that the bloc's budget should not only finance critical green, digital and infrastructure projects, but should also aim to protect the values that are under threat from "forces with a dark vision" for the European continent.

"We still need to do all of that – but we also need to invest in saving lives, bringing back peace, and defending liberty at key moments in history," she added.

Sandu expressed optimism about Europe's ability to face the security challenges posed by Russia's ongoing aggression against Ukraine: " Europe has always stepped up and found the resources to help because we Europeans believe that the expansion of evil can be stopped only through the enlargement of goodness."

What is known about Moldova's accession to the EU

On December 14, 2023, the European Council decided to start accession negotiations with Ukraine and Moldova, and also granted candidate status to Georgia.

At the end of December, Moldovan President Maia Sandu asked for support for her re-nomination in the autumn 2024 elections. At the same time, she would like to hold a national referendum on membership in the European Union. Sandu stressed that the referendum on Moldova's accession to the EU would be held without Transnistria.

On January 25, Moldovan President Maia Sandu began consultations on the organisation of a referendum on Moldova's accession to the European Union.

On March 19, Sandu asked the Moldovan parliament to call a referendum on EU accession. The Constitutional Court recognised the referendum as legal.

When Moldova starts negotiations on EU accession, its progress will be considered separately from Ukraine, despite the fact that both countries received candidate status at the same time, said the EU Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova, Janis Mažeiks.

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