Press Releases European Council: Remarks by President Charles Michel at the press conference with President Maia Sandu in Chisinau

European Council: Remarks by President Charles Michel at the press conference with President Maia Sandu in Chisinau

Thank you for your warm welcome. I am very glad to be in Chisinau again.

This is a defining moment for Moldova and for Europe. Russia’s war against Ukraine has caused senseless suffering and pain. And the consequences do not stop at the Ukrainian borders. The consequences are global – from Russia’s attack on international law, to one of the biggest refugee crises since World War Two, to rising food and energy prices.

Moldova has been particularly impacted by this war in your neighbourhood. And it is exacerbating the existing crises of COVID-19 and risks to your energy supply. Most recently, Moldova has been affected by provocative security incidents and cyberattacks.

But from day one of the Russian invasion in Ukraine, you have been clear on two issues: condemning the Russian aggression and welcoming the huge number of Ukrainian refugees.

The EU stands in full solidarity with you, with Moldova. It is our European duty to help and to support your country. And to increase our support for your stability, security, territorial integrity and sovereignty. Our economic and political support must continue hand in hand.

This visit is an opportunity to witness your tireless efforts in hosting roughly 100 000 refugees. This is the highest number per capita of all the countries hosting Ukrainian refugees.

And the EU has stepped up to help, providing €13 million of immediate funding for humanitarian programmes, followed by a further €15 million for migration management. We have also provided €15 million to reinforce the EU border assistance mission.

The EU has offered comprehensive support to strengthen Moldova’s resilience. And our support will continue to match the scope of the challenges.

First, with humanitarian aid. We have mobilised financial support.

Second, on energy. Since March, the Moldovan electricity grid has been synchronised with the continental European grid to support the stability of its power systems. And at our last European Council meeting in Brussels, we agreed that our upcoming common platform for the purchase of energy resources will be open to the associated partners, including Moldova.

Third, on security and defence. We will help Moldova to strengthen its resilience, and to cope with the consequences of the spill-over from the Russian aggression in Ukraine.

Last year, we announced support of €7 million for equipment for the medical and engineering needs of the army under the European Peace Facility. And this year, we plan to significantly increase our support for Moldova by providing its armed forces with additional military equipment.

We will also provide support to counter disinformation, strengthen social cohesion, and withstand cyberattacks.

Finally, we believe that reforms will enhance Moldova’s resilience and shore up your sovereignty and independence.

We will continue to support Moldova on its path of reforms in the area of rule of law, and in particular the ongoing reform of judicial governance bodies and fighting corruption. These efforts are particularly important in the context of Moldova’s recent application to become a member of the EU.

We will continue to deepen our partnership with you to bring your country closer to the EU.

Today, the people of Moldova, and their institutions, are facing severe consequences from Russia’s war against Ukraine. In these difficult times, we must help our partners and friends to defend their security and their democratic values – our common democratic values.

Now, more than ever, it is time to join forces and show our unwavering solidarity with you and with the Moldovan people. Thank you.

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