MOLDOVA: Pieces of silver to surrender its independence?"OCTOBER 2010:
THIS was a contribution I made under the Catch the Eye procedure to a debate on Implemented Reforms in the Republic of Moldova*.
It was my fifth speech of the week in the chamber of the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
"The number of net recipients of EU funding is currently just under half of the total membership. As we extend membership to more and more, even poorer, Eastern states, the proportion of net recipients will increase to perhaps two-thirds of total membership. This will, self-evidently, be at the expense of net contributors. However, it will also be at the expense of current members that are net recipients.
"Easing of visa restrictions, we are often told by advocates of that easing, has nothing to do with migration, by which they mean legal migration. It will have everything to do with illegal migration - the trafficking of people to work for less than the minimum wage and less than minimum working conditions. It will also deplete that country of people of working age, who might otherwise help to pull that country out of its poverty.
Moldova declared its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. Does it really wish to surrender its independence to the European Union, however much it might receive in pieces of silver?"
* Moldova is not yet a candidate country or even yet listed as a potential candidate country. However, it is already a recipient of EU funding under the EU's Neighbourhood and Partnership policy. The EU never tires of saying that this is not given to encourage EU membership but that is clearly false. It was admitted during the debate that Moldova's eventual membership was the long term aim.