Republic of Moldova
Last updated in August 2014
Political relations between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Republic of Moldova are amicable and have steadily intensified in recent years. On 30 April 2012, Germany and the Republic of Moldova celebrated the 20th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. 2014 marks the 200th anniversary of the immigration of German settlers, who became known as Bessarabia Germans. The occasion was celebrated in May 2014 with a large series of events in Chișinău.
Germany is a major partner of the Republic of Moldova as it seeks to move closer to Europe and is held in high esteem. This is also true of German support for the negotiation process to resolve the Transnistria conflict. Bilateral relations are reinforced by numerous official visits. A number of Moldovan government ministers and other high-level representatives of government and parliament make regular visits to Germany, the most recent being that by Prime Minister Leancă in July 2014. Moldova’s Parliament Speaker Igor Corman also visited Germany in July 2014. Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel visited the Republic of Moldova on 22 August 2012. She encouraged the country to continue its efforts to move closer to the European Union. Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier and his French counterpart Fabius travelled to Moldova on 23 April 2014. At a joint press conference, Steinmeier said that Moldova could depend on its partnership with the EU. Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Gerd Müller visited the Republic of Moldova in mid-June 2014.
A German-Moldovan Forum has been set up in both Berlin and Chişinău, which is seeking to step up and strengthen contacts in the political, economic, cultural, scientific and academic spheres.
Germany’s political foundations and the German Foundation for International Legal Cooperation (IRZ) strongly support the transformation process in Moldova. Every year, a number of Moldovans take advantage of the German Bundestag’s International Parliamentary Internships programme.
Germany is one of the Republic of Moldova’s most important Western trading partners and is among the principal importers from and exporters to Moldova. In 2013, Germany ranked fifth as a supplier of imports to the Republic of Moldova and sixth as a buyer of the country’s exports. German companies have made a number of major direct investments in the country, for example in the automotive supply industry. As of the end of September 2013, German direct investment in Moldova was worth a total of approximately USD 166 million, USD 28 million of which was invested in the country’s banking sector. Moldovan hopes of further intensifying economic relations through more joint ventures have so far been fulfilled to a limited extent only, in part because of corruption, bureaucracy and problems in planning and implementing investment promotion measures. German companies, too, are currently showing growing renewed interest in Moldova as an investment destination, the focus being on the country’s free economic zones. In late 2013, a limited number of privatisations took place and more are planned for the period after the next parliamentary elections. Implementation of the Association Agreement with the EU (including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement, DCFTA) is expected to have a positive effect on the conditions for trade with and investment in the Republic of Moldova.
The Federal government has been engaged in development cooperation with the Republic of Moldova since 1993. So far, Germany has made available a total of more than EUR 72 million in development cooperation with the country. The most recent (annual) intergovernmental negotiations on development cooperation were held in June 2014. At these, the Federal Government pledged the Moldovan government another EUR 14.3 million for bilateral development measures. German development cooperation with Moldova focuses on the priority areas democracy, civil society, public administration and decentralisation and promoting sustainable economic development.
Cultural relations between Germany and Moldova have further intensified in recent years. Both the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Robert Bosch Foundation have representatives there. Relations are enlivened by the provision of teaching and learning resources to promote the German language, an intensive DAAD scholarship programme, further-training courses for teachers in Germany and a lively exchange of scientists and academics in cooperation with the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Partnering with a library in Chişinău, the Goethe Institute runs the German Reading Room, which attracts students and teachers of German from all over the country as well as interested visitors. The German cultural centre Akzente is an official Goethe Institute partner.
Three Moldovan schools are members of the Schools – Partners for the Future initiative (PASCH). At one of them, it is possible to obtain the German Language Diploma. In the area of music, too, there is extensive cooperation between German conductors and musicians and Moldovan orchestras.