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Moldova: Separatist Transnistria Region Reorienting Trade from Russia to EU

Transnistria’s de facto president, Yevgeny Shevchuk (left, center), meets on April 20 with German parliamentarian Fritz Felgentreu and other German officials to discuss economy, trade, and the breakaway region’s relations with Moldova. According to Transnistria’s de facto State Customs Committee, 27 percent of the region’s exports in 2015 and 58 percent of its exports in the first quarter of 2016 made it to the European Union. (Photo: Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic Presidential Press Service)

In a situation that seems sure to vex the Kremlin, the separatist entity of Transnistria is growing trade-dependent on EU-oriented Moldova.
 
Transnistria – a strip of land straddling the Dniester River and the Ukrainian border – broke free from Moldova with Moscow’s help in the early 1990s, amid the collapse of the Soviet Union. Transnistrian leaders adamantly reject Moldova’s political authority. But they seem willing to listen when money speaks, and do not seem shy about taking advantage of Moldova’s connections to the European Union.
 
Under the Association Agreement signed between Moldova and the EU in 2014, Transnistria, which the international community sees as part of Moldova, also received the right to tariff-free exports to the EU, so long as its exporters meet sanitary and labeling rules, along with other requirements.
 

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Moldova: Separatist Transnistria Region Reorienting Trade from Russia to EU

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