§ Mr. MacShane
The UK enjoys a constructive relationship with Moldova and has a strong interest in its security and development. Since independence, Moldova has achieved progress on promoting human rights and democracy. However, we have concerns in some areas. We have stressed the importance of the parliamentary elections in early 2005 for the Government of Moldova to demonstrate its commitment to the values of democracy, rule of law and human rights.
We remain concerned about the situation in Transnistria, and want to see negotiations on a political settlement brought to an early and successful conclusion. The EU continues to call on the two parties, in particular the Transnistrians, to negotiate constructively and in good faith.
Together with our EU partners we will continue to raise any concerns we have with the Moldovan Government, bilaterally through our embassies in Chisinau, in multilateral fora and through public declarations.
§ Mr. MacShane
The UK supports economic reform and democratic development in Moldova, including through EU programmes. Moldova is a priority country for the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), launched by my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary 1275W in spring 2002 as the Wider Europe initiative. The ENP offers the new neighbours of the enlarged EU greater integration, including deeper trade and economic relations, in return for economic and political reforms.
Our embassy in Chisinau continues to support democratic development and good governance and will support several projects in the run up to elections in early 2005.
In addition to Foreign and Commonwealth Office assistance, the Department for International Development's bilateral programme for Moldova contributed £8.4 million between 2000 and 2003. The planned programme contribution for 2004 is £2.3 million. The UK also supports the IMF, World Bank, and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in their efforts to promote economic reform in Moldova.
Since 1991, the EU has provided assistance to Moldova totalling Euros 253 million including technical assistance under the TACIS programme.
§ Mr. MacShane
Several groups have raised their concerns about the dispute in Transnistria and the continuing presence of Russian forces in Moldova with my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary. The Government share these concerns. We want Russia to fulfil commitments made when signing the Adapted Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty at the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe Summit in Istanbul in 1999. These commitments include the full withdrawal of arms and ammunition from Transnistria, or their destruction in situ, and the withdrawal of Russian forces. Together with NATO allies we have stated thatwe can envisage ratification of the Adapted CFE Treaty only in the context of full compliance by all State Parties with agreed treaty limits and consistent with the commitments contained in the CFE Final Act.