25th anniversary of relations between Belgium and Moldova on 11 March
On 11 March, Belgium celebrates the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations with Moldova. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders welcomes this celebration, pays tribute to the friendship between our two peoples and wishes the Moldovan people great harmony and prosperity.
Since Moldova's declaration of independence in 1992, our two counties have moved closer together at political, economic, cultural and commercial level. There are strong links between our two countries and the Association Agreement with the European Union will further strengthen these links in the future. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders encourages Moldova in its determination to implement ambitious reforms to promote democracy, the rule of law and economic and social development.
Different forms of cooperation have gradually developed between our two countries, as can be seen from the ongoing high-level political contacts. The Heads of Government have had the opportunity to meet on several occasions in the past. More recently, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders has met the Prime Minister and his Moldovan counterpart in both Chisinau and Brussels. Meetings have also taken place at parliamentary level, with the President of the Senate Christine Defraigne meeting her colleague Andrei Candu last year. Exchanges also take place at technical level, as Belgium regularly hosts Moldovan officials and diplomats for training programmes. These established contacts are helping to strengthen the ties that unite us.
Our countries are historic economic partners, with the first Belgian investments in Chisinau dating back to the end of the 19th century. Commercial exchanges between our two countries have increased over the last few years. Economic and trade missions and various political and technical contacts have helped to raise awareness of the strengths of both countries. The deep and comprehensive free trade agreement with the European Union is helping to create new opportunities on both sides, consolidate the business environment in Moldova and, finally, strengthen our economic relations.
Belgium welcomes this anniversary and is ready to strengthen its relations with Moldova, while respecting values such as the rule of law, the free market and multilateral cooperation in the areas of peace and security.