Memorandum of Understanding between the United Kingdom and Moldova on the return of funds confiscated by the National Crime Agency in relation to Luca Filat

This Memorandum of Understanding relates to the return of funds (“the returned funds”) confiscated by order of the district court dated November 14, 2019 from Luca Filat.

1. This Memorandum of Understanding does not constitute an international treaty within the meaning of public international law and the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (1969) and does not produce legally binding commitments on the parties.

2. The returned funds total £ 456,068.38, the total amount that will be returned to the Republic of Moldova to finance social assistance that will benefit vulnerable people in Moldova.

Use of returned funds

3. The Government of the Republic of Moldova and the Government of the United Kingdom have decided that the returned funds will be used to support social assistance. The returned funds will finance the additional staff of the personal assistant social service included in the minimum social package (“the service”), which is funded by the National Social Welfare Agency, a subordinate of the Ministry of Labor and Protection. social. Returned funds will be transferred from the UK government to the National Welfare Agency, which will manage the returned funds throughout the life of the project, under Government Decision No.800/2018 approving the Minimum Service Package social welfare and amending the regulation on the methods of establishment and payment of material aid.

4. The reimbursed funds will be used for the benefit of the severely disabled. Local authorities will hire full-time personal assistants whose role is to provide support in all daily tasks, from personal hygiene to household management. Returned funds will fund approximately 566 [footnote 1] personal assistants for a period of four months.

5. During the implementation period and within the framework of this project, no additional costs, other than those mentioned in this Memorandum of Understanding, will be accepted.

6. None of the returned funds may be disbursed, spent or used for the benefit of one of the alleged perpetrators or participants in the offenses (passive corruption and influence peddling committed by Vladimir Filat) giving rise to the recovery of the returned funds. Funds, including, where applicable: family members, heirs, assigns, successors, private firms, corporations, trusts or legal entities of such alleged perpetrators or participants; or any person or entity prohibited from contracting with any party or international financial institution or from undertaking projects in Moldova.

Transparency and accountability

7. The Government of the Republic of Moldova has appointed Keystone Moldova, a civil society organization, which will monitor and evaluate the expenditure of the returned funds and ensure that the returned funds are fully allocated to the intended use of the service.

8. Keystone Moldova will monitor and evaluate the use of returned funds and the service delivery process, including requests for personal assistants to ensure that the most urgent needs are met and that assistants are allocated in a transparent manner. .

9. Keystone Moldova will provide three interim monitoring reports (“monitoring reports”) during the service period (from the MoU being signed until May 31, 2022). These monitoring reports will be provided to the governments of Moldova and the United Kingdom within one month of their completion.

10. The costs of monitoring the project will not be covered by the Moldovan National Agency for Social Assistance.

11. Within one month of the conclusion of the project (March 31, 2022), a final report (“the final report”) will be provided by the Government of the Republic of Moldova to the UK government, setting out the use of the returned data. Funds.

12. By April 30, 2022, Keystone Moldova will provide a final report (“the final monitoring report”) to the Government of the Republic of Moldova and the Government of the United Kingdom setting out their findings throughout the monitoring period. , including their review of the final report. .

13. The final report (from the government of the Republic of Moldova) and the final monitoring report (from Keystone Moldova) will be available on the websites of the governments of Moldova and the United Kingdom.

14. The Government of the Republic of Moldova and the Government of the United Kingdom will have an additional three months (until July 31) to raise other issues. [footnote 2]

Anti-corruption statement

15. The Government of the Republic of Moldova and the Government of the United Kingdom will undertake to ensure that no offer, donation, payment, remuneration or advantage in any form whatsoever which may be regarded as an unlawful act or a form of corruption , has not been or will be granted to anyone, directly or indirectly, for the purpose of obtaining an advantage in relation to projects or the Returned Funds.

16. The Government of the Republic of Moldova will immediately notify the UK Government in the event that any credible allegation or other indication of fraud or corruption in connection with the Project, returned funds or this Memorandum of Understanding comes to its attention. .

17. The Government of the Republic of Moldova:

(a) take timely and appropriate steps to investigate such allegations or other indications, commencing an investigation within thirty days of receipt of any credible allegation;

(b) promptly and regularly inform the UK Government of the progress of such investigations and, promptly after their conclusion, inform the UK Government of the actions taken by the Government of the Republic of Moldova in response to the findings; and

(c) in the event that the investigation proves that there has been fraud or corruption, reimburse in full and as soon as possible to the National Social Assistance Agency all funds that may have been lost, misappropriated or disbursed, spent or used inappropriately, and take any other action that may be necessary or appropriate to repair the damage caused by the fraudulent or corrupt act (s).

18. The Government of the Republic of Moldova will ensure that the National Social Assistance Agency funds the service in accordance with Government Decision No. 800/2018. Contact details

19. Contact details of the Government of the Republic of Moldova:

Ministry of Labor and Social Protection

2, rue Vasile Alecsandri

Chisinau

[email protected]

20. UK Government contact details:

Criminal Finance Unit

6th floor, Peel building

2 Marsham Street

London

SW1P 4DF

[email protected]

Start of operation and signature

21. This Memorandum will enter into force upon signature and will remain in effect until April 30, 2022. The Memorandum may be extended by decision of the Government of the Republic of Moldova and the Government of the United Kingdom.

22. The foregoing Minutes represent the agreements concluded between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of the Republic of Moldova on the matters referred to therein.

23. This Memorandum is signed in duplicate in the English and Romanian languages, both texts being equally authentic.

Steven Mark Fisher, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Moldova

For the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Marcel Spatari, Minister of Labor and Social Protection

For the Government of the Republic of Moldova

Signed at the British Embassy, ​​Chisinau, September 21, 2021


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