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Moldova Coalition Wants IMF 'Rescue' Talks

Liberal Democratic leader Vlad Filat
Liberal Democratic leader Vlad Filat
CHISINAU -- The Western-oriented parties that won a combined majority in Moldova's July parliamentary vote were expected to ask the IMF formally to open discussions for a rescue loan.

Vlad Filat, head of the Liberal-Democrat Party, told RFE/RL on September 2 that an IMF credit was "the only possibility" for Moldova to overcome the current economic crisis.

He said the Alliance for European Integration (AIE), made up of four liberal parties, including his own, would send a letter the same day to the IMF asking to start a "technical discussion" on a possible loan.

Filat said Moldova's sinking economy a symptom of the global downturn but also the result of the "wrong" policies of the previous, Communist government, which he accuses of failing to come up with a strategy to counter the crisis and instead ruling the country "electorally."

Moldova held parliamentary elections in April but a failure to pick a president forced a new election in July.

Moldova's economy shrank by 7 percent year-on-year in the first six months of the year, while the budget deficit quadrupled.

The outgoing Communist government has held tentative talks with the IMF about a loan, but apparently failed to convince the international lender that it was willing and capable of implementing austerity policies in the midst of an election year.

Communist President Vladimir Voronin had touted a Russian pledge of some $500 million in aid to help weather the economic storm.