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European Parliament Approves Aid For Moldova

Moldovan Prime Minister Pavel Filip speaks at a recent press conference at EU headquarters in Brussels.

BRUSSELS -- The European Parliament has voted for the European Union to disburse 100 million euros ($113.5 million) of macrofinancial aid to Moldova, with the first of three tranches due in December.

The aid consists of a loan of 60 million euros ($68 million) and a grant of 40 million euros ($45.5 million).

The assistance is an EU crisis-response instrument to help Moldova meet its short-term financing needs.

It is meant to complement an International Monetary Fund program approved in November 2016.

The financial aid package was delayed in May after several political groups in the European Parliament voiced concerns about Moldova's media situation, the rule of law, and recent changes to the country's electoral law.

In June, a compromise was found between the European Parliament, the European Commission, and EU member states in which Chisinau must respect democratic norms, including a multiparty parliamentary system and the rule of law.

The aid is also conditional on guarantees from Moldova's government to respect human rights.

The European Commission has the right to immediately suspend or cancel any payments if Moldova fails to meet the conditions.

Based on reporting by Rikard Jozwiak in Brussels
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