On 25 April 2023, national and local authorities, academic and NGO communities, and Moldova’s international partners reviewed progress and discussed priorities in the water sector in the frame of the 7th meeting of the National Policy Dialogue. On its path to EU accession, Moldova needs to prepare for putting in practice EU objectives in this sector. This includes, for example, halting the deterioration of surface and groundwater and achieving their good status. Alignment with EU water legislation requires increased knowledge, integrated water management and transboundary cooperation, and water management based on sound economics and transparency. Besides policy measures, investments are needed to reduce pollution from agriculture and industrial and municipal wastewater. Also, measures to adapt the water sector to climate change are high on the agenda.
Chaired by the Minister of Environment of the Republic of Moldova, the discussion built upon the commitments made in conjunction with the Water Action Agenda, which is a key outcome of the UN 2023 Water Conference, and aims at addressing the global water crisis. The review of progress and discussion of priorities happened against the background of the first-ever contributions of the Republic of Moldova to the European Commission's enlargement report.
Ms Iordanca-Rodica Iordanov, Minister of Environment of the Republic of Moldova said: “The European Union is a trusted partner of the Republic of Moldova. The progress that Moldova made in water management is largely due to our long-standing partnership in this area. It enabled us to improve water legislation and management practices. EU support is critical for modernising water infrastructure. As an EU candidate country, we aim at scaling up our ambition and speed up our efforts to ensure clean water for all, strengthen institutions, restore rivers, lakes, and ecosystems, improve water monitoring, and engage in effective cross-border cooperation. We count on EU support along this path.”
Mr Adam Grodzicki, Deputy Head of Cooperation Section EU Delegation to Moldova said “Water is critical for the health of people and ecosystems alike. It plays a significant role for our economies. As pressures on water quality and quantity are mounting, we need to take action and look for innovative solutions. This is particularly important in the context of climate change. Based on shared commitments, the European Union and its Member States will continue supporting Moldova’s water sector to make it better fit for modern challenges and people’s needs.”
Speaking on behalf of the Programme’s implementing partners, Mr Alexander Zinke, Environment Agency Austria, stressed the value of Moldovan stakeholders’ and Government’s commitment to tackle water and climate and environmental challenges more generally: “Moldova’s water resources are in need of better protection. This EU programme helps strengthening the country’s capacities in river basin planning, monitoring and sustainable water use, as well as in collecting and publishing further data on land use, waste and air pollution. We are pleased to witness progress and will continue joint work as part of the green transformation of our societies and economies.”