Moldova may be Moscow’s for the taking as the new prime minister stated publicly this week that Chisinau may suspend cooperation with the IMF and take a $500M loan from the Russian Federation.
Ion Chicu leads a minority Socialist government which wants to raise pensions and salaries ahead of a presidential election next year. President Igor Dodon is a former Socialist Party leader and also a strong supporter of closer ties with Moscow, reported Reuters.
“We consider any cooperation with external partners through the prism of Moldova’s national interests. We are committed to investing a significant amount of money in the social sphere,” Chicu told N4 television channel.
“If the IMF shows flexibility, we will continue to cooperate with it. If there is no such flexibility, then we do not exclude the possibility of a pause in our cooperation,” he said.
Russia maintains 2,500 ‘peace keeping’ troops in the breakaway Moldovan region of Transdniester guarding a decaying Soviet munitions depot.