August 17 - Minister of Finance Dumitru Budianschi and USAID Moldova Mission Director Scott Hocklander signed Amendments to the 2016 Assistance Agreements, supplementing USAID’s budget for development programs in Moldova with an additional $63 million. These funds are provided by USAID to support Moldova on its EU trajectory and in response to the multiple crises faced by the Republic of Moldova.
The majority of funds, $46.3 million, will contribute to Moldova’s sustainable economic growth and help Moldovan economy become more resilient. The money will be used to:
- Accelerate Moldova’s long-term energy security through increased integration with the European energy system, and to increase renewable energy and attract investment into domestic power generation and energy efficiency;
- Deploy the use of new technologies and innovations that will boost Moldova’s digital economy and secure sustainable growth;
- Expand reforms in business enabling environment and trade and reduce areas vulnerable to corruption;
- Improve the resilience and competitiveness of Moldovan agricultural sector in key sectors such as winemaking, fruit, table grapes, berries and honey production to stimulate a sustainable and inclusive recovery from the regional crisis.
At the same time, $16.7 million will go towards programs to strengthen participatory democracy and governance. Assistance will focus on:
- Additional support for independent media and creation of a media sector that is more resilient to political and financial pressure and less susceptible to disinformation;
- Increased support for credible electoral processes and fair political competition;
- Provide rapid response to the immediate needs of local governments dealing with an influx of refugees, including in rural areas, to be more effective, transparent, and accountable including community development, infrastructure projects, and support for businesses;
- Augment ongoing reforms in the justice system.
With these amendments, the total grant amount of the 2016 U.S. Assistance Agreements executed by USAID reached $153.2 million. USAID has been providing development assistance to Moldova since 1992. The overall USAID investment into Moldova’s economic and democratic development in the last 30 years exceeds $600 million.