26 Oct 2022

Ex-post evaluation of the implementation of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area between the EU and its Member States and Moldova

Tinatin Akhvlediani / Steven Blockmans / Julie Bryhn / Daniel Gros / Weinian Hu / Irina Kustova / Farzaneh Shamsfakhr

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The Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) between the European Union (EU) and its Member States and the Republic of Moldova, provisionally in force since 2014, is the economic and trade pillar of the EU-Moldova Association Agreement (AA). It aims to deepen political association and economic integration between the EU and its associated partners. To achieve this objective, the DCFTA provides far-reaching and progressive regulatory approximation to EU law in trade-related areas and foresees gradual reciprocal market opening. With these distinctive components, it goes beyond the ‘new generation’ free trade agreements (FTAs) and represents ‘a unique type of trade agreement’.

This report provides the findings of the evaluation, including quantitative and qualitative assessments and stakeholder consultations, as described in the evaluation inception report.

Overall, the implementation of the DCFTA has been efficient and effective with room for improvement in several areas, including legislative approximation, the implementation of the trade and sustainable development (TSD) provisions and the use of preferences under the Agreement.

The Annexes to this paper are available here.