A direct contact among the University students from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Moldova inspired students to thought-sharing. Short essay bellow shows what the students have to say on the topic of European Integration and Reform Experience of the Visegrad countries and how it relates to Moldova’s European path.
Title: Do you believe that Moldova can meet Copenhagen criteria and become a member of the Europe-an Union or will it remain a partner of the EU only? In your opinion, what is the reasoning for Copenhagen criteria?
Author: Eduard Koliada
University: Univerzita Mateja Bela v Banskej Bystrici. The Faculty of Political Science and International Relations. 1 year of study
Eachperson, whohas a citizenshipofEuropeanUnion, hasrightto work, study and travel all around its territory.EU considers the human right of free movement as a fundamental right, which cannot be limited. In 1985, five countries of EU (France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands) established a Customs Union and agreed to abolish controls on inner borders. Since then this Union has been named The Schengen Area, after a small town in Luxembourg, where the signing ceremony was held. Gradually this area extended on all of the countries of EU, except The United Kingdom and Ireland, which had their own view about the necessity of saving customs and border barriers. Iceland and Norway became members of European Union, even though they are located out of it. According to the Schengen Agreement in order to enter any country freely, it will be enough to have visa in any of the countries which have signed the document.
To my mind at a present time the process of regional and sub regional integration in Europe forces countries, which cooperate with the European Union, to develop new concepts and approaches in solving problems of domestic and foreign politics.
Moldova in terms of its social, political, trade, economic, administrative and cultural development has reasons to intent to join the EU. The direct and wide-ranging impact of the European Union on the government administration of Moldova is considered to be started at the year 2008, when “Development Report” was prepared for the first time. Thanks to that document and a number of similar ones, which included annual reports on the social development activities of Moldova, careful research has been done by the EU officials concerning the organization and work of the executive structures of the Moldavian Republic. Starting from 2010 the reports on the development have been gradually turning into means of monitoring main political and economic processes, which have been taking place in the country.
For all of the candidates accessing EU, as well as for Moldova, opportunity to join the Union depends on a number of conditions. Precisely, in order for any European country to start the accession negotiations, it is necessary for it to meet the Copenhagen criteria, the main purpose of which is to promote a balanced and sustained economic progress of all members of EU. Established on June 21-22 1993, these criteria include:-supremacy of the democracy;-supremacy of law;- the protection of human and minority rights;-the presence of a functioning market economy;
I believe that today Moldova has low matching with these criteria. At this moment instead of implementing the development of democratic institutions and market economy plan, politicians of Moldova speak about abstract “European integration”, which itself cannot replace such plan. Moreover, under the guise of “European integration” people try to present things that have nothing to do with it, such as absence of boundaries or free trade with EU.
As I see it, Moldova may be allowed to increase export of its products, but again, this is just trading, not European integration. The bad thing is that powerful export countries will not allow Moldova to compete with them at the same level. Export production of Moldova, which is oriented on selling alcohol and textile, will not be able to resist the pressure from other competing countries. A surplus of cheap products does not allow Moldova to sell their goods.
Simply at this moment Moldova does not meet the Copenhagen criteria, which is very important because of the fact that each European country should be competitive and meet the supremacy of the democracy and a number of other criteria in order to not repeat the situation that has happened with Greece and Spain.
In conclusion I would like to say, that no one prevents citizens of Moldova and its government from building their country up in that way, so that anyone who would come to visit it could say “There is no difference between Moldova and other countries of EU”, so that no one could call it a “poorly developed country”, so that there would be no corruption, so that people would not be afraid of what may happened tomorrow, so that national capital and foreign investors could have comfortable conditions to work, so that each year at least a couple of new factories and enterprises got started, so that people could plan their future in Moldova, instead of thinking about how to take their children out of the country.
I am a student from Ukraine and now in my home country situation looks very similar, that`s why I can compare the way people live in Eastern and Western parts of Europe. I hope that the situation which has formed by now will change in a better way soon. I strongly believe that people from every single part of the world should start understanding the necessity of the unity of all the people, regardless of their age, skin color, religion or ethnicity. Everything is possible if there is a strong wish and will of the people!
I think that the desire of politicians is quite important, too. If leaders of the nation are people, interested in the real development of their own country, instead of those just talking about “European integration” and acting in favor of other, more powerful states, then EU itself will be for accepting Moldova as its part!