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Moldovan parliament speaker calls for boosting partnership with Russia

Currently, Moldova is discussing an opportunity of gas supplies over TurkStream with Gazprom, the economy minister stated
 Moldovan Parliament Speaker Zinaida Greceanii  AP Photo/John McConnico
Moldovan Parliament Speaker Zinaida Greceanii
© AP Photo/John McConnico

CHISINAU, August 20. /TASS/. Moldovan Parliament Speaker Zinaida Greceanii has called for boosting strategic cooperation with Moscow at a meeting with Russian Ambassador to Chisinau Oleg Vasnetsov on Tuesday.

"We have exchanged views on ways to boost cooperation between Moldova and Russia, as well as ties between the two countries’ parliaments. I reaffirmed the Moldovan parliament’s position about the need to strengthen strategic partnership with Russia," Greceanii wrote on Facebook.

Presently, Moldova is discussing an option of gas supplies over the TurkStream gas pipeline with the Russian gas holding Gazprom to secure an alternative to the gas pipeline over the territory of Ukraine, Moldova’s Minister of Economy and Infrastructure Vadim Brynzan said at a briefing on Tuesday.

"We are holding talks with partners from Russia, specifically from Gazprom, regarding the opportunity of gas supplies to the Republic of Moldova over the southern route, the so-called TurkStream," the Minister said.

The contract for transit of Russian gas across the territory of Ukraine expires at the turn of this year.

Partnership with Russia's Gazprom

Gazprom is a sole gas supplier to Moldova. The Russian company exported 2.9 bln cubic meters of natural gas to the Republic in 2018, up 8.4% in annual terms.

In May 2017, Gazprom began construction of the offshore section of the TurkStream near the Russian Black Sea coast. The project envisaged the construction of the gas pipeline through the Black Sea to the European part of Turkey and further to the border with Greece. The length of the sea part of the pipeline will measure around 930 km, the overland part on the Turkish territory — 180 km.

The first line will be intended for the Turkish market, the second — for gas supply to the countries of South and South-Eastern Europe. The capacity of each line reaches 15.75 bln cubic meters of gas per year.

Political line-up in Moldova

In early June, the Party of Socialists that supports Moldovan President Igor Dodon and the pro-EU ACUM bloc formed a parliamentary majority in order to oppose the Democratic Party led by oligarch Vladimir Plahotniuc, which controlled the former parliament and cabinet. The leader of the Party of Socialists, Zinaida Greceanii, was elected the parliament’s speaker, and the government was formed with Maia Sandu, the leader of the Party of Action and Solidarity, as the prime minister.

When the Democratic Party was in power in Moldova, relations between Moscow and Chisinau soured, ties between the two countries’ governments and parliaments were frozen.