Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs
June 21, 2005
U.S. Assistance to Moldova -- Fiscal Year 2005
U.S. assistance programs to Moldova aim to promote democratic reforms and help build a prosperous Moldovan economy that is fully integrated with the global economy. U.S. programs focus on agribusiness development, local governance, civic participation, anti-corruption, law enforcement reform, and anti-trafficking in persons efforts. In addition, assistance programs support Moldova’s active membership in the regional structures of Southeast Europe, which will help lead to Moldova’s stated objective of European integration.
The estimated $21.7 million budgeted by all U.S. Government agencies for assistance programs in Moldova in Fiscal Year 2005 is allocated roughly as follows based on information available as of the date of this fact sheet:
Democracy programs in Moldova support local government reform, rule of law, and the development of civil society including independent media, and political parties. U.S. training and technical assistance promotes government reform in about 65 communities with the goal of increasing the autonomy and effectiveness of local government, encouraging fiscal decentralization, improving strategic planning, and generating greater transparency and citizen participation in decision-making.
Political party programs promote the development of political party transparency and responsiveness and build democratic practices from the bottom up. The rule of law program advocates civil rights and builds legal associations. Additionally, the Eurasia Foundation and the U.S. Embassy administer small grant-making programs to support indigenous NGOs in fostering civil society, private enterprise development, local government accountability, independent media, and other initiatives.
Training and exchange programs give the next generation of Moldovan leaders first-hand experience with the day-to-day functioning of a market-based, democratic system. Last year, the U.S. Government sent over 125 Moldovan citizens to the United States on academic and professional exchange programs. Since 1993, the U.S. has funded travel for over 3,080 Moldovan citizens to the United States on these programs in fields such as management, social service provision, and NGO development.
While market reform programs focus primarily on post-privatization agricultural sector development, the U.S. also supports commercial law and regulatory reform for the business sector. A major benchmark in the reform process was the passage by Parliament of the "Guillotine Law" in December 2004 which requires that all unpublished official acts regulating the business sector be reviewed for impact and the elimination of those acts that have no merit. In addition, the Western NIS Enterprise Fund, which has been capitalized by the U.S. Government, is investing in Moldova’s largest local bank and sole microfinance institution, thereby increasing the availability of credit in the marketplace.
The U.S. supports Moldova’s active participation in the Trade Working Group of the Stability Pact for Southeastern Europe and in the trade and law enforcement cooperation initiatives of the GUAM grouping of Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Moldova.
In Fiscal Year 2005, there were approximately 130 Peace Corps Volunteers in Moldova, working to develop small- and medium-sized enterprises, health care, and education.
Security and law enforcement assistance focuses on combating corruption and fighting Organized Crime. Assistance programs also focus on strengthening border security, especially in the breakaway region of Transnistria. Export Control and Related Border Security Assistance activities help prevent the transnational movement of weapons of mass destruction and conventional threats. Foreign Military Finance and International Military Education and Training (IMET) funding help develop, reform, and enhance Moldova's armed forces while giving its peacekeeping battalion the ability to operate alongside Western forces with common or interoperable equipment. This funding promotes the integration of Moldova into Euro-Atlantic security structures. In Fiscal Year 2004, Moldova joined the Science and Technology Center in Ukraine, which provides a multilateral vehicle for U.S. agencies to collaborate with former weapons scientists under State Department funding.
The Anti-Crime Training and Technical Assistance (ACTTA) program of the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs supports cooperative efforts between U.S. law enforcement agencies and Moldovan central and local government officials to combat organized crime, corruption, narcotics, and trafficking in persons. U.S. support for the Trade and Transportation Facility in Southeast Europe, along with World Bank assistance, also enabled Moldovan Customs to begin implementation of the Asycuda system, which seeks to prevent the movement of contraband, increase customs revenue collections, and facilitate Moldova’s integration into the Southeast European market.
Current humanitarian programs for Moldova consist of providing medicines, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment and supplies, emergency shelter items, and food to the most needy individuals, families, and institutions. The total value of U.S. humanitarian commodities for Moldova in FY05 is estimated to be in excess of $6 million. U.S. humanitarian programs are managed by the State Department through grants to U.S. private voluntary organizations.